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UN Women Ukraine Hosts 5th Annual Women in Arts Award as Part of HeForShe

HeForShe Ukraine

On March 6, the Ukrainian Institute and UN Women Ukraine held the fifth annual Women in Arts ceremony.  The award recognizes the achievements of women in the field of arts and culture and honors the memory of female artists who have lost their lives in conflict. The governments of Sweden and Japan, as well as the Women's Fund for Peace and Humanitarian Aid of the United Nations, supported the event. 

Women in Arts is an independent award founded in 2019 by the Ukrainian Institute and UN Women Ukraine as part of the HeForShe solidarity movement for gender equality. The Award aims to spotlight the accomplishments of women artists and promote Ukrainian culture both in Ukraine and internationally.  

Here are the nominees in seven categories for the Award: 

  • Women in Visual Arts: Kateryna Buchatska, Kateryna Aliinyk, Lesia Khomenko 

  • Women in Music: Mariia Yaremak, Jamala, Khrystyna Daletska 

  • Women in Theatre: Oksana Dmitriieva, Inna Falkova, Yuliia Zaulychna 

  • Women in Film: Alisa Kovalenko, Maryna Vroda, Maryna Maikovska 

  • Women in Literature: Yaryna Chornohuz, Liubov Yakymchuk, Iya Kiva, Olena Herasymiuk, Olesia Yaremchuk 

  • Women in Cultural Management: Olha Honchar, Olha Balashova, Oleksandra Koval 

  • Women in Cultural Journalism, Criticism, and Research: Kateryna Yakovlenko, Kseniia Bilash, Darka Hirna 

The laureates of the Women In Arts Award were chosen by experts in their respective fields. Nominees for the Award were evaluated based on key eligibility criteria such as professional achievements, reputation, innovation, and national or international recognition. The evaluation process was conducted by an Expert Council and a Jury comprising specialists in the field of arts and culture, representatives from the public sector, and independent institutions. 

"Amidst the turmoil of war, Ukrainian women stand tall in all spheres of life, demonstrating remarkable resilience, dignity, and determination. Through their leadership, creativity, and unwavering spirit, they navigate the hardships of war, embodying the true essence of resilience in the most challenging of times and bringing hope for recovery and renewal. Today, we not only celebrate the unbreakable spirit of Ukrainian women in arts but also pay tribute to those bright women who fell victim to Russian aggression. It's a moment of great pride, deep grief, and solidarity with the Ukrainian people," said Sabine Freizer Gunes, UN Women representative in Ukraine. 

The ceremony was hosted by journalist, presenter, poet and screenwriter Oleksandra Hontar and stand-up comedian and volunteer Vasyl Baidak. 

The Award laureates were presented with prizes, already traditional figurines in the shape of intertwined women's hands by artist Maria Kulikovska. According to the artist, women's hands symbolize support and protection, as well as women's work. This year, the color of the statuettes was chosen to be a gentle sky blue color, symbolizing the light that remains in stormy times, and the hope for a clean and peaceful sky after the end of the war. 

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