A message from artist Emilia Kabakov, who, with Ilya Kabakov, was behind the inspiring international project The Ship of Tolerance that Art Refuge was privileged to be part of a few years ago:
We don't choose when and were we are born. We don't choose when and were we die. But we definitely choose whom we become, how we live our life and ,if we are lucky ,where we live. Ilya and I were born in Dnipropetrovsk,Ukraine. Live in Moscow/well, I was taken back to Dnipropetrovsk in 1958, when my parents were arrested trying to leave USSR, and then come back to Moscow in 1971. Living there without documents /propiska/ But I always knew that I will leave. That this is not the country I want and will live and bring up my children. It was almost impossible, but in 1973 I was the first person to emigrate from the same Dnipropetrovsk. This was the city of my grandfather family for 400 years! Ilya and I always were adamant to say that we are INTERNATIONAL ARTISTS! And we still want to say this again. International community managed to come to the point when artists, musicians, poets, writers from EVERY LITTLE COUNTRY, EVERY CORNER OF EARTH started to work together. And right now ,despite everything ,we all stand together in our believe, that WE ALL ARE IN THIS TOGETHER FOR FREEDOM, FOR DIGNITY, FOR MORAL INTEGRITY of EVERY HUMAN BEING .
WE ARE FOR MAKING THIS LIFE BETTER,SAFER, FOR EVERY CHILD ON EARTH. And its a CRIME OF UNHUMAN PROPORTION TO MAKE PEOPLE SUFFER AS PEOPLE IN UKRAINE ARE SUFFERING NOW.