Press release by the Chair of the VCRC, 30/03/2012
Picture: Censorship is blossoming here (Kvit is both the Ukrainian name for « flower » and the name of the President of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy)
On March 29th, 2012 the Academic Council of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy liquidated Visual Culture Research Center as NaUKMA unit. After the previous decision on the suspension of VCRC activities the representatives of international artistic and academic community expressed their support for the Center. Particularly, the petition for the support of VCRC was signed by Timothy Snyder, the professor of history at Yale University, world renowned philosophers Slavoj Žižek and Judith Butler, the curator of the First Kyiv International Biennial of Contemporary Art Arsenale 2012 David Elliot, French philosopher Jacques Rancière and many others.
However, members of the Academic Council regarded such open support for the Center as harming the Mohyla’s public image and discrediting the university administration. Despite the resolution of Academic Council, the VCRC continues its work as an independent art and research institution both inside and outside the university. The next planned events will include: exhibitions by the German photographer and film director Miron Zownir, Austrian photographer Erich Lessing, Polish artist and 7th Berlin Biennale for Contemporary Art curator Artur Żmiewski, lectures by the American philosopher Michael Walzer and the Slovenian cultural theorist Slavoj Žižek.
Since 2008 Visual Culture Research Center has been conducting regular events for wide public (discussions, international conferences, exhibitions etc.) that have become popular within the KMA community, as well as outside of it. At NaUKMA the VCRC, together with the independent student union « Direct Action », were the main organizers of the students’ protests, which lead to withdrawal of the law in draft, according to which the Academy could have lost its university status.