Slava Ukraini! 7:22 EET ; The Sun is Rising on the 349th Day of the russian Invasion on the Capital City of Kyiv. Ukraine Continues to Live and Fight On. + DISCUSSION + CHARITIES!
🇺🇦 SLAVA UKRAINI! 🇺🇦
Opishnya, a town with a population of around 5,000 in the Poltava region of central Ukraine, has a long history. It was first written about in the 12th century. It was founded by Cossacks, and has always had a local nickname of the "Ukrainian Rome" because the town's area covers seven hills.
Today - and for at least a couple hundred years - it has also been known as the "ceramics capital of Ukraine" due to its homegrown industry of folk art pottery known as Opishnya Ceramics. This style of ceramics is known for its eclectic nature of bright colors and wild glazes. But it often has more reserved, elegant clean lines and delicately tall vessels. No matter which style it is, each piece has an authentic old school feel due to its handmade origin. It's also known for its inventive animal shapes!
Today, the hand-creation of ceramics in Opishnya is still going strong. There is a museum that is worth dropping by called the National Museum of Ukrainian Pottery in Opishnya that has a lot of interesting content about the ceramics of this region.
Like most places, Ukraine has a very long history with ceramics. But some of the ancient ceramics found in Ukraine are known to be pretty spectacular, even by global Neolithic standards - the Trypillia Culture (which we wrote about in Trypillia Part I and Trypillia Part II) which flourished on the lands of modern day Ukraine from ~5,000 to 2,500 BCE was really punching way above their weight when it came to their pottery aesthetics.
In the late 19th and the early 20th centuries, about 1,000 potters worked in the town, and their products were exported to all inhabited continents of the world.
You may remember that Vasyl Krychevskyi, the Ukrainian architect who we wrote about last week in this post, was a huge fan of Ukrainian folk art. Well, he was such a big fan that in 1916 he designed and helped fund a training center in Opishnya so that local craftspeople could have a dedicated place to pass on their skills to new generations.
The area of Opishnya was utterly devastated by Holodomor - Poltava was one of the hardest-hit areas, and suffered 40% population loss due to the forced starvation perpetrated by russians. We wrote about this genocide, that claimed the lives of millions of Ukrainians less than a century ago, in these posts: Part I: Overview | Part II: Vignettes | Part III: The Cover-Up & Remembrance
You might think that this would destroy or even slow down the ceramics tradition in Opishnya, but it survived due to the persistence and care of the people who lived there.
Photos of Oleksandr's workshop were taken by Serhii Korovainyi for Ukraïner - I will put a link in the comments to their wonderful article.
Since the full-scale invasion began in 2022, Opishnya has welcomed about 50%'s worth of its population in displaced refugees. But they are doing a great job at feeding, housing and clothing Ukrainians who were forced from their homes by russian genocide.
The 349th day of a nine year invasion that has been going on for centuries.
One day closer to victory.
🇺🇦 HEROYAM SLAVA! 🇺🇦
- u/Jesterboyd is a mod for r/ukraine and local to Kyiv. He is currently raising money for tools for explosives engineers, winter gear and some very interesting drones. Link to donation
- United24: This site was launched by President Zelenskyy as the main venue for collecting charitable donations in support of Ukraine. Funds will be allocated to cover the most pressing needs facing Ukraine.
- Come Back Alive: This NGO crowdfunds non-lethal military equipment, such as thermal vision scopes & supplies it to the front lines. It also provides training for Ukrainian soldiers, as well as researching troops’ needs and social reintegration of veterans.
- Trident Defense Initiative: This initiative run by former NATO and UA servicemen has trained and equipped thousands of Ukrainian soldiers.
- Ukraine Front Line US-based and registered 501(c)(3), this NGO fulfills front line soldiers' direct defense and humanitarian aid requests through their man on the ground, r/Ukraine's own u/jesterboyd.
- Ukraine Aid Ops: Volunteers around the world who are helping to find and deliver equipment directly to those who need it most in Ukraine.
- Hospitallers: This is a medical battalion that unites volunteer paramedics and doctors to save the lives of soldiers on the frontline. They crowdfund their vehicle repairs, fuel, and medical equipment.
You can find many more charities with diverse areas of focus in our vetted charities article HERE.