French museum, the Musée d’Orsay, caused outrage among Ukrainian art lovers after announcing a roundtable discussion dedicated to Russian art in Paris called “Thinking about Russian art of the 19th century.”
The museum planned to hold the event aimed at “taking a journey into a Russian heart” on February 16 but then rescheduled it for the next day due to the wave of discontent on social media, Ukrainska Pravda reported.
Ukrainian art lovers say it is inappropriate to hold such an event amid the Russian war when invaders target the country’s museums and loot Ukraine’s national and cultural property.
The users also demanded changing the origin of the artist Vasyl Surikov, who was raised in a Cossack family, from Russian to Ukrainian. Surikov painted “Boyarynia Morozova,” an artwork that the Musée d’Orsay planned to discuss at the roundtable.
“The Metropolitan Museum has changed the information on the origin of the “great Russian artists” Aivazovsky and Kuindzhi. Now they are Ukrainians. Vasyl Surikov is a descendant of the Don Cossacks. Do you consider him Russian?” one of the users asked.
“You chose a good time to talk about Russian art right when the Russians are destroying Ukrainian culture. And don’t say that culture is outside of politics!” added the co-founder of Culturno, Taya Druzenko.
She offered the museum to organize an event on how Russian culture expropriated Ukrainian art.
“In Russian-occupied Mariupol, the destroyed facade of a bombed-out theater was painted with the faces of Pushkin, Gogol, and Tolstoy. Do you want to discuss this Russian work of art?”
“Let’s talk about how good a maniac’s art is while he kills a victim”
“Did you discuss German art when the Nazis took over Paris?”
“Russian culture is bankrupt because it created murderers, though Russian terrorists still have money to build up a facade and spread their corpse culture,” users wrote.
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— Musée d'Orsay (@MuseeOrsay) February 15, 2023