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7 (2014)
Tunnelling Towards Hope


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28 February - 6 March 2014

Ukraine History

A Stronghold of Rulers and Rebels

With the recent death toll jumping to nearly 100 and 1,000 injured, Hrushevskoho Street, one of the strongholds of EuroMaidans three-month-long protests, made headlines around the globe. It was here, on 19 January the countrys stand against government corruption, abuse of power, and the violation of human rights turned from peaceful protest to all-out revolution. Having witnessed much over the years, Hrushevskoho is a street with a history, and not only care of recent days.

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Ukraine Today
Acelebrity using their status and intelligence to influence public views and opinion is rarely seen in modern society, even less so in Ukraine. Here, the majority of celebs use their time, effort, and money to enhance or further their career rather than put their name to something that can do good for others. However, as EuroMaidan intensifies, some are making themselves heard and they fall either side of the EuroMaidan divide.
It used to be that when rebellion and revolution occurred, the intellectual, creative, and spiritual elite would be front and centre.

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Ukrainian Culture

When Walls Can Talk

People have been writing on walls since the dawn of civilisation, we call it graffiti, and ranges from simple written words to elaborate wall paintings. Sometimes it is merely the creator wanting to leave his or her mark; sometimes there is an underlying social or political reason. And it is due to the latter that graffiti has exploded across Kyiv in recent months. Anti dictator messages aside, we peel back a few layers of paint to look at graffiti in the city in general.

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Ukrainian Culture

Makes & Fakes

Retro cars have always had a magical influence on people, often proving more attractive and interesting than brand new sport cars. But what happens when you combine the old and new? With a little creativity and a lot of elbow grease, Oleksandr Stupkin did just that when he transformed his humble Mitsubishi Eclipse into a gleaming Lamborghini Reventon.

Cars have come a long way since French inventor Nicolas-Joseph Cugnot first unveiled his fardier à vapeur (stream dray) in 1769. The carbon-steel beauties we see on the streets today are such highly complex machines, that it is hard to imagine constructing one from the ground up. Some 99% of cars are manufactured in factories, but there are a few gifted artisans who can build a car from practically nothing. Their craft is a fascinating blend of design, metalwork, and mechanical expertise. 

The Retro Style 
This month, the best examples of retro and exotic cars will be exhibited at the 6th Biannual Retro and Exotica Motor Show. Typically displaying some 200 exclusive vehicles in Pushkin Park, near Shulyavka Metro, the show juxtaposes retro cars and high-end sports cars. This contrast illustrates the evolution of the automobile from clumsy steam-engine carts to sophisticated, high-tech vehicles. The three-day show will feature a lively entertainment programme, ancient military vehicles, and educational briefings and brochures for car enthusiasts. 

The Handmade Supercar 
Oleksandr Stupkin will be noticeably absent from this months motor show. Unfortunately, the Ukrainian car genius wont be able to bring his homemade souped-up Lamborghini Reventon to the Motor Show because he will be attending the finals for Emma 2012 an international auto upgrades competition. 
Oleksandr was invited to participate in the finals after his Mitsubishi-Eclipse-cum-Lamborghini won first place in two categories at the regional auto modifications contest at the Odessa Cup 2012 in August. Since he unveiled his creation, life has been a whirlwind for the jeweller turned grease monkey. He remembers that it all started when he got into a car accident that damaged the cars front. At first, I set out to just replace the damaged front of the car. But my father and I got so involved in choosing and creating that part that one thing led to another, and before we knew it, wed created something unique. 

Sleepless Nights and Welding Equipment
Oleksandr says he spent many sleepless nights sketching new ideas, drawing on his degree in architecture for inspiration. As the drawings were finished, I decided to start welding parts myself, just as I had drawn them, so that the project would be truly be my own. Since it was a hobby project I was working on for myself, I didnt worry about spending too much time or money.
Oleksandr and his father worked on the car for a painstaking two years and eight months before he unveiled it. Putting about $40,000 into the projectincluding the original price of the car its not a bad investment, considering that some estimates value the car at $2 million. Oleksandr also adds that hes not ready to abandon his pet project just yet. He still has plans to revamp the cars sound system, brakes, and maybe even change out the engine for one that will sound exactly like a Lamborghini. 

An Uncanny Coincidence 
Although Oleksandr is very talented, his idea is not entirely unique. As he was building his jaw-dropping Lamborghini duplicate, a Chinese mechanic named Wang Jian was unwittingly doing the exact same thing. Wang Jian spent even less transforming his Nissan Minivan into a Lamborghini Reventon, dropping about $9,500 total on the project. 
History is, after all, full of examples of simultaneous inventions and ideas, such as Frenchman Louis Daguerre and Englishman William Tabot, who simultaneously invented photography in 1840. What really counts is what new projects wait around the bend for these brilliant car aficionados. 

Down the Road 
After lovingly investing so much of his money and time into this project, Oleksandr has come to the realisation about his career goals, and says, Now that the car is almost finished, I hope to make this my real profession. It is unlikely the mechanic will have any trouble finding work with such a head-turner on his new resume. In fact, the car attracts so much attention Oleksandr says he feels a bit nervous when he takes it out for a spin. Its crazy! Everyone rubbernecks on the road and if I stop somewhere, everyone wants to take a photo with the car! 
Of course, Oleksandr has had a couple of offers from buyers, but he says that they are just discussions and nothing has been made official. The same is true about orders for new, custom-made cars. Ive had a couple of people ask me to do a car for them, but nothing has been finalised. 
Oleksandr says he is more concerned with tapping into his imagination and creating something new and inspiring. Today Im more focused on sketching out all the new ideas swirling around in my head. Who knows? Maybe soon Ill come up with the concept for a future BMW.

6th Biannual Retro and Exotic Motor Show
Akko International (Pushkin Park, Peremohy 40b)
12 13 October 10.00 19.00
14 October 10.00 17.00
Admission is 45hrv for adults, free for children under 11
222-9544 
www.retroexotica.com.ua

EMMA 2012 
Blockbuster, Moskovskiy 34b
27 October 08.00 18.00
For ticket prices and more information visit www.emma.net.ua

Vadym Mishkoriz

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  • When Walls Can Talk
  • Rights We Didnt Know We Had
  • The Path to Europe Begins Here...
  • Documenting Life
  • Head into 2014 Healthy

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    Ukraine Truth
    Rights We Didnt Know We Had

    Throughout EuroMaidan much has been made of Ukrainians making a stand for their rights. What exactly those rights are were never clearly defined. Ukraine ratified the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1952. The first article of the Declaration states all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights, they are endowed with reason and conscience, and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. The ousted and overthrown Ukrainian government showed to the world they dont understand the meaning of these words.


    Kyiv Culture

    Pulling Strings
    Located on Hrushevskoho Street the epicentre of EuroMaidan violence, home to battles, blazes and barricades childrens favourite the Academic Puppet Theatre had to shut down in February. Nevertheless, it is getting ready to reopen this March with a renewed repertoire to bring some laughter back to a scene of tragedy. Operating (not manipulating) puppets is a subtle art that can make kids laugh and adults cry. Whats On meets Mykola Petrenko, art director of the Theatre, to learn more about those who pull the strings behind the show.

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