Mar 17, 2022

By Christine Ross

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Listen to Christine’s report here.

“Soul of Ukraine” is an immersive art exhibit in Toronto that puts visitors inside the paintings of that country’s most well known artist. Proceeds from the show will support Ukrainian relief efforts.

“The purpose of this exhibit is to not only raise funds to help Ukrainians but also to open a cultural front to promote Ukrainian culture as well as support Ukrainian people and artists during this difficult time,” says Ukrainian-born producer Valeriy Kostyuk.

The exhibit tells the emotional story of 19th century Ukrainian poet, painter and playwright Taras Shevchenko who promoted his Ukrainian culture and was a champion of independence. Now, 163 years after his death, his message is prophetic.

“A lot of his poetry revolves around living on your own land and being free and all of these ideas that he was writing in his poetry and that he was depicting in his visual works are relevant today,” says Kostyuk.

Presented by the same team behind Immersive Van Gogh, Soul of Ukraine was not supposed to open until later in the year but with the war raging on, the team scrambled to present is sooner to raise money for humanitarian relief in Ukraine.

“In 1941, his works were evacuated out out of Kyiv in wooden crates, and today, the same crates are used to protect the art from the Russian aggression in Kyiv so right now, this exhibit is the only way to see that work.”

Just last year, Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and his wife saw this exhibit in Ukraine.

“So Zelenskyy and his wife were the first to see the exhibit and they had a wonderful time, the first lady even said she wished she had more time to spend in the gallery” remarked Kostyuk.

For more information on the Soul Of Ukraine at 1 Yonge Street, visit

Proceeds go to humanitarian aid in Ukraine.

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