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Early 2022, I received a message from Ukraine: an entrepreneur and mom from who I had purchased Christmas ornaments before on Etsy (I collect Soviet Christmas ornaments) was in trouble. Her house had just been bombed and all the treasures that came with it. It was a huge tragedy that played in my head a lot. I thought about Ukraine, destroyed lives and about all the beautiful and colorful things that came from there. At home as a child, I had pysanky decorated with the traditional batik method, we called them the « real Easter eggs". I researched on the pysanka and realized that the history of it intertwined with Canada, as the country has long been the home of Ukrainian people.

So for François-Houdé show, I wanted to do something that pays tribute to the Ukrainian people and their culture. As someone who loves objects and their history so much, this is also my way of reminding us that behind every war, the world's material culture is always fragile and threatened. The patterns are taken from my previous collections and the ovoid pieces are covered with flowers to evoke the vinok, the Ukrainian flower crown.

Even more interesting, the history of Pysanka is linked to ceramics and Canada! As brittle eggs do not stand the test of time, it is ceramic representations of pysanki, dating back nearly 1000 years and discovered during archaeological research, that have made it possible to trace the ancient origins of this rich tradition. During the Soviet era, the tradition was banned as a religious practice in Ukraine and the collections destroyed by the war and the regime. But interesting enough, this piece of material culture was being kept in Canada! While some of the heritage was destroyed on one side of the ocean, the eggs were carried by Ukrainian immigrants with them to North America. In Canada, we are fortunate to have a large Ukrainian diaspora and artisans who continue this ancient tradition. The largest Pysanka can be found in Alberta as a commemorative sculpture.

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