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The exhibition has filled the 24,000 square meters of Mystetskiy Arsenal, a government-run art space created by former President Viktor Yushchenko.
“Works of Ukrainian artists are on display together with the works of world’s famous artists, putting our country on the world’s cultural map,” Natalia Zabolotna, general director of Mystetskiy Arsenal said at the opening.

Arsenale is hoping to eventually become an alternative to the Venice Biennale, an art show that runs in the years between Arsenale’s planned dates. More than Hr 38 million was spent to set up the first Ukrainian event. Organizers are hoping to recover 50 percent of the amount from the state; sponsors covered the other half of the costs.

“This is the first biennale [of its kind]; the works you’ll see here you will never see at any other biennale,” said David Elliott, one of the world’s top art curators who was in charge of the exhibition called “The Best of Times, The Worst of Times.”

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