NEW YORK, May 1, 2007 - The Ukrainian Institute of America is pleased to announce the first U.S. exhibition of the Ukrainian artist Michael Murphenko, “HILISM”.

The exhibition is comprised of 50 uncomfortable oils and graphics, displaying blinding color and iconic subject matter.

The opening reception, with the artist in attendance, will be held at the Ukrainian Institute (2 East 79th Street, New York, NY, tel. 212-288-8660) on Thursday, May 17th from 6 to 8 p.m. The exhibition runs through to June 10th, 2007. A 200-page catalogue accompanies this exhibition.

Curators: Walter Hoydysh (tel., 212-288-8660, whoydysh@esscousa.com)
Alla Kuchinsky (tel. 347-727-3728, alla_kuchinsky@hotmail.com)
This exhibition is supported by FOLGAT AG
Permanent Mission of Ukraine to the UN and Consulate General of Ukraine in New York.

Murphenko’s HILISM it’s not just the negation of nihilism. Derived from the Latin "little thing" or "trifle", it stands for "something". HILISM is the philosophy of the nucleus - no matter how small or difficult to see, it is the only thing that makes sense.

Michael Murphenko (Murphy) was born in Scotland, grew up in Australia, studied art in Belgium, fell in love in Germany. Fell in love with a Ukrainian girl, and later – with Ukraine. Fell in love so strongly, that he took the pseudonym Murphenko, opening his soul forever to the alive and generous metaphysics of the Ukrainian land. Combined with the European school of art, this added to Michael’s artistic style a unique intonation – at the same time intellectually convincing and sensual.

“The paintings of Murphenko are uncomfortable. As uncomfortable as when a once familiar acquaintance unexpectedly makes a gesture of sincerity. We feel lost and, deep in our soul, frightened by this gesture of openness to the world. We fear that, possibly, we too will have to take off the armor of coarseness.”
Lubko Deresh, writer, Lviv, Ukraine.

“The originality of Michael’s art style is precisely the consequence of his openness. The sincerity in the paintings speaks and is felt without external manifestos. And the simplest of images – a woman with a child, lovers, flowers, – is always directed towards the internal experience of the event or the moment, rather than towards the symbol of visualization.”
Kostyantyn Doroshenko, art critic, curator, Kyiv, Ukraine

“With Goya's expression, chimeras and philosophical depth: the artist puts forward questions, but leaves them without answers… and that is on purpose - he doesn't want to be read like an open book.”
Leonid Homyakov, art critic, Kyiv, Ukraine