Ukrainian Art Installation Brings Warmth to Antarctic Station


A new art installation has been created at the Ukrainian Antarctic station “Academician Vernadsky” by the balbek bureau and experimental design bureau “Workshop of Wonders”. The installation, called “House. Memories”, was initiated and implemented with the support of Silpo.

Installation Details

The architects’ idea was to create an installation that would acquaint tourists with Ukrainian culture and provide a warm image for those living far from home in the polar region. The installation is based on a rethought fuel container and has a slate roof, chimney, and characteristic windows. The container’s walls feature a mini-exposition with symbolic objects such as a branch of spruce, a fragment of embroidery, and a sample of UNESCO-recognized Kosovo painted ceramics, drenched with epoxy. The tank is painted in Antarctic blue and has a fine detailed frame around it, which resembles a sketch made from memory.

The installation is also accompanied by a replica of a coin with the trident of the time of Vladimir the Great, made on the model of silver from the collection of the National Museum of History of Ukraine. The replica and accompanying text were provided by the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy.

New Meanings for the Installation

Despite being put on hold due to the full-scale invasion, the installation materials arrived on the island of Galindez in early 2022 and the design was installed a year later. According to the authors of the project, in the year since the beginning of the project, the installation has acquired new meanings. For millions of people forced to leave their native cities and villages due to the Russian aggression, the return home has become the main dream and incentive not to give up even in dark times.

Strengthened Structure

To ensure that the installation can withstand sharp gusts of wind and icing, the structure was further strengthened. The old fuel tank now sits on a podium, which allows visitors to bypass the cabin. The project has succeeded in its goal to bring a piece of Ukrainian culture to the polar region and provide a symbol of hope and resilience for those far from home.