Margarita Bolgar

Visual artist


Hosting periodAutumn-Winter 2023


Margarita Bolgar was born on 18 June 1975 in the village of Velyki Kopani, Kherson Region, to the family of the local artist Mykola Lilyak. From 1991 to 1995, she studied at the Berislav Pedagogical College. At the age of 33, Margarita returned to painting. Margarita Bolgar has participated in numerous exhibitions and art projects. She was included in the encyclopedia of Ukrainian naїve art as one of the iconic representatives of the “New Naive”.

In 2021, Bolgar produced the art book “Flowing Muddy Water” and participated in the project “Modern Female Artists Naive” at Ya-gallery in Kyiv, Ukraine, which also extended to Great Britain. In 2018, her work “Spring is in Full Swing” was featured on the cover of SHO magazine, Kyiv, accompanied by an interview of her. The artist also showcased a solo exhibition titled “Polarity” at the Museum of Modern Art in Kherson in 2017.

Story of experience of risk, relocation and/or exile

Artist’s account: Being on the front line for a year and a half, I received the maximum stress from the military events and battles that were taking place. It was very difficult to endure everything that was happening and it was life-threatening. The last few months, I felt that I would go crazy if I didn’t leave.

Projects created during the residency period

During the residency, Bolgar worked on the “Donat & Donat” series, which serves as a comprehensive exploration into the role of donating within society and individual lives. It delves into how donations can instigate change in situations, events, a person’s fate, or even their character. This concept of giving has been an integral part of the artist’s work, deeply ingrained since the early stages of their fascination with it.

Within their personal sphere, the notion of “donate” has permeated all aspects of their creative endeavors, rooted in the belief that this form of charity, stemming from the heart and devoid of material interests, holds immense potential to benefit others. The artist devotes significant free time to crafting unique and creative donations, intended for gifts, discussions, reflections and aesthetic enjoyment.

This artistic donation is not merely confined to personal circles; it aspires to contribute to the broader culture of society and, perhaps, even the world. The artist envisions their creative philanthropy as a meaningful contribution to society’s collective culture. The chosen theme of philanthropy underscores the interconnectedness of society, emphasizing that everyone may encounter unforeseen circumstances in the future. The present moment underscores the importance of extending help when it is most needed, here and now, especially in situations where there is an acute need for assistance.

Residency: PostImpreza

Margarita Bolgar: The space I was provided for the residency was very cozy. I didn’t even dream of something so chic. While I was there, I really recovered from the explosions which drove you crazy. And I have to write about it because maybe other artists are still dreaming of getting to such a place for recovery. The time and memories during my stay will echo inside me like sedative pills. I thank the Artists at Risk residency programme and the Assortment Room (PostImpreza) from the bottom of my heart for the chance given to me. I was actively engaged in creativity throughout my stay.

This programme is organized by Perpetuum Mobile (PM) as part of the Artists at Risk (AR)-Network in partnership with UNESCO and with the support of The Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and Teiger Foundation.