Exhibits

Now on view:

Autonomy Lost and Regained: The Ukrainian Orthodox Metropolia of Kyiv, 1633-2019

For people following the news from Ukraine in 2019 who were unfamiliar with the history of the Orthodoxy in Ukraine, the grant of autocephaly to the newly reorganized Orthodox Church of Ukraine by the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople may have seemed like a radical innovation or a historical rupture. Or they may have simply been baffled by all of the fuss.

In fact, the events of 2019 were not so much a rupture as a re-connection. Rather than a radical innovation, it was the culmination of over a century of determined effort.

This exhibition tells the story of the long path from the extraordinary flowering of the Kyivan Church under Petro Mohyla and his successors in the middle of the 17th century, through the incorporation of the Kyiv Metropolia into the Moscow Patriarchate, and finally to the struggles for the renewal of local autonomy during the 20th and 21st centuries. It also explores the centuries-long fraught relationship betweek Kyiv and Moscow, how that relationship played out in the sphere of religion, and how those events related to the surrounding cultural and geopolitical forces. It includes liturgical textiles from the 17th to the 19th centuries, as well as artifacts, documents, and photographs from the 1910s to 2019.

This exhibition is accessible online, as well as in person. The online and in-person versions tell the same story, but they are not identical: the in-person version has items that are not online, and the online version has additional explanations and context.

The in-person exhibition can be viewed in the UHEC Library Gallery. Hours are currently by appointment only, until the buildings are fully re-opened post-COVID. Please stay tuned for updates.

View the online exhibition

 

This exhibition is made possible by a grant from the New Jersey Council for the Humanities, a state partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this exhibition do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities or the New Jersey Council for the Humanities.


 

While the Center's new museum building is under construction, we are presenting exhibits in the Library Gallery.

This gallery occupies the location formerly used by the UOC of USA bookstore, and has been completely refurbished for use as a gallery, including the installation of museum-grade UV absorbing film on the windows to protect the displayed artifacts from sunlight damage.

View map and get directions.

View UHEC's online exhibits

 
"Earth" by Lydia Bodnar-Balahutrak (1992, mixed media)

This virtual exhibition assembled under the auspices of numerous Ukrainian American community, cultural, and arts organizations features the works of Ukrainian-American artist Lydia Bodnar-Balahutrak.

 
"Zemlia" by Bohdan Pevnyi (detail)

The UHEC Patriarch Mstyslav Museum has in its permanent collection a number of artworks commemorating the genocidal artificial famine of 1932-33 known as the Holodomor. These works range from the small and subtle to the graphic and monumental, and are by artists both well-known and not so well-known.

 

A sampling of a series of 80 linocuts by Ukrainian artist Mykola Bondarenko (b. 1949) depicting the unbelievable “menu” that survivors of the Holodomor subsisted on.

 

How did a Ukrainian winter song arranged for chorus by Mykola Leontovych end up as the perennial American Christmas favorite "The Carol of the Bells"? The story involves an unlikely musical ensemble called the "Ukrainian National Chorus". Here we tell the story of the Chorus through archival materials from the collection of Fr. Mykola Kostets'kyi, who was a member of the Chorus in the 1920s.

 

All of the post-World War II refugees who fled Ukraine in the mid 1940s ahead of the advancing Red Army had their tales of hardship and triumph. In this exhibit, we tell the stories of two similar, but at the same time very different refugee experiences.