Works by Ukrainian Artists Now on Display at First Parish 

September 26, 2023

A Bedford Center gallery will host a 15-day exhibition of a spectrum of works created by contemporary artists in Ukraine.

“Affirmation of Life: Art from Today’s Ukraine” opened on Friday night at The Gallery@First Parish on the Common. This show runs through Saturday, Oct. 7.

Organizers call the exhibition “a unique opportunity to appreciate the depth and richness of the Ukrainian culture, coming directly from artists currently living and working there.”

Vlad Shapiro tells guests at last Friday’s opening reception about the “Affirmation of Life: Art from Today’s Ukraine” exhibit at the First Parish. Staff photo by Wayne Braverman

Bedford residents Vlad Shapiro and Nataliya Proskura, mathematicians, originally from Kyiv, put together the artworks for this show. Much of the art will be on view for the first time in the United States.

Friday night’s opening reception included a concert featuring Ukrainian soprano Olga Abakumova of Sudbury. She escaped from hostilities in Ukraine with her eight-year-old daughter in June under a special refugee program for Ukrainian citizens. 

She was accompanied in her performance by classical pianist Clemens Teufel. 

The gallery, which is located in the First Parish at 75 The Great Road, is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Mondays through Fridays. Private showings can be arranged.

All proceeds from selling art go straight to Ukrainian artists for supporting art life in Ukraine. At the exhibit, you can also donate to Mriya (, a non-profit organization created by local Ukrainians, mostly young professionals and students, to provide humanitarian support for Ukraine as well as support for the arts.

This show is supported by the Bedford Cultural District Partnership, the First Parish in Bedford, and the Ukrainian Cultural Initiatives. More details are available at the website

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Wayne Braverman is the Managing Editor of The Bedford Citizen. He can be reached at [email protected], or 781-430-8837.

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