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12.10.2018 @ 10:00 am - 8:00 pm

Sergei Bratkov’s personal exhibition will open in the Palace of Students of KhPI (2nd floor).

Kharkiv Polytechnic Institute (KhPI) graduate, world-famous Ukrainian artist and photographer Sergei Bratkov will present his personal exhibition at his home university. The exhibition will open on September 28th, 2018, at 18.00 in the Art KhPI space, located in the Palace of Students of KhPI.

Sergei Bratkov is a graduate of the Electrical Engineering Department of NTU “KhPI” (class 1983), a member of the Supervisory Council of the University, a well-known participant of the most prestigious exhibitions: Venice Biennale (2005, 2007), Sao Paolo Biennale (2002), Manifesto (2004). Sergei is one of the top 5 most successful Ukrainian artists.

The author works in the techniques of photography, video, sculpture, and performance. Most of his works are reflections on changes in the social structure of a developing country. According to Sergei, the role of radical art in modern society is to put questions to society and talk about painful things. For this reason Sergei Bratkov is often called fashionable and expensive, acutely social — and even a master of black humor.

At the exhibition which opens at the Palace of Students of KhPI, the author will present one of his most famous works — a video installation “Balaklava Courage”, for which he was awarded the main prize of the 5th Annual All-Russian Prize in Contemporary Art “Innovation” (2010). This is a film by Sergei Bratkov about young men who, with bravado fitting their youth, try to impress girls by jumping into water in acrobatic ingenious ways. The work uses contrast as its main effect. Thanks to the black-and-white format in which the video was shot, it can be perceived as a film from the past, showing the viewer some incredible energy and a bright future contained in these guys. On the other hand, the artist shows old concrete blocks, ruins of the past, their physical presence is a reflection of the present. Thus, Bratkov turns cheerfulness around to face a gloomy reality.

What: Sergei Bratkov’s Exhibition “Balaklava Courage”

Where: Art KhPI Space (Palace of Students of NTU “KhPI”, 79/1 Pushkinskaya St., 2nd floor)

When: Friday, September 28th, 2018, at 18.00.


Sergei Bratkov was born in Kharkov in 1960, studied at the Art School named after Repin, graduating in 1978. At the same time, he entered the Department of Electric Engineering of the Polytechnic Institute (majoring in industrial electronics), graduating in 1983.

Sergei began his creative career as a painter, and only in the early 1990s, under the influence of another famous Kharkovian, Boris Mikhailov, he turned to photography. Together with Mikhailov, Sergei Solonsky, and Victoria Mikhailova, Bratkov founded the Fast Reaction Group in 1984.

Bratkov’s Kharkovian origins greatly influenced his work. “We are talking about the Kharkiv movement in photography. Primarily because it was very socially focused. No other city has produced so many photographs on social topics. After all, this genre had to do with people from the middle class, and Kharkiv was a very cultured city, so this social photography flourished in Kharkiv,” explained Sergei Bratkov in an interview for the Ukrainian newspaper “Den” (Day).

From 1993 to 1997 Sergei Bratkov’s Kharkiv studio hosted the “Up/Down” gallery which opened.

Since 2000 the artist has been living and working in Moscow, visiting with pleasure his beloved city of Kharkiv.

Bratkov’s work has received recognition on the world stage. His works were exhibited at the 25th Biennale of Contemporary Art in São Paulo, and in 2007 he was one of the artists who represented Ukraine at the 52nd Venice Biennale, as part of “the Poem of the Inland Sea” project, organized by the PinchukArtCentre. The aspiration to tell about the social ill-being of a post-Soviet country in the early 2000s attracted the attention of Western collectors and curators to Sergei Bratkov.

Bratkov’s works are held in several museums. Most of them are sold abroad — in Belgium, Spain, Italy, USA, but also by collectors in their native Ukraine.

The Supervisory Council of NTU “KhPI” was created in July 2017 to create conditions for the current and future development of the university in order to improve national education and better integrate it into the world educational system.

The Supervisory Council of the NTU “KhPI” has prominent representatives of government organizations, industry and business leaders, education and science figures who are not university employees. They are known for their professional achievements in education and science and enjoy solid trust in their educational, scientific, professional, creative, public organizations. The head of the Supervisory Council is the first vice-president of the Ukrainian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs, founder of K.Fund Vasily Khmelnitsky.


10:00 am - 8:00 pm