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In spite of the war: Kyiv’s culinary, cultural and technological news

Apr 27, 2023 | Ukraine, Life, Community, Featured, Arts & Culture, Business, Politics, News

Boris Johnson at the Zalizna Kramnytsia

Yulia Skarlat
For New Pathway – Ukrainian News, Kyiv

Business in Kyiv does not stop, even during a war – it adapts and continues almost as usual. Every day, more and more establishments of various types are opening in the capital: from cozy cafes to restaurants with a wide range of exquisite dishes.

Kyiv and Kyivans continue to live and try to contribute to the development of the country, supporting the economy and creating new jobs. Entrepreneurs take a big risk, but new businesses appear every week.
One of the most notable openings of 2022 was the food court at the central Kyiv Railway Station.

The Kyiv Railway Station today is a place for greetings and farewells, a place where people’s journey in Ukraine begins. From here, men send their families abroad, and soldiers leave for the frontlines or come back home on leave. The Kyiv Railway Station has become the center of life, and its “modernization” is looking great.
The station has always been the face of Kyiv and is increasingly more important now, as air travel has been suspended for over a year.

Корнер Idealist на залізничному вокзалі

The famous One Love Coffee and Idealist cafes have already opened in the station premises, and a Milk Bar corner has also been launched recently.

“The idea was very organic in the context of our long experience with coffee on the trains. We especially love infrastructure projects. Airports, railway stations, gas stations have a large flow of people (before the war, there were also many foreign guests) and making quality coffee roasted in Ukraine and making it available to many people is our mission, to overcome stereotypes and popularize Ukrainian coffee culture,” the Idealist explained to The Village Ukraine.

The food court, which would combine several establishments, is still in the initial stage. According to Oleksandr Shevchenko, “Ukrzaliznytsia” communication’s head, a complex engineering concept is being planned. However, the station is a historical building where only limited changes can be made.

There is another amazing initiative at the Kyiv Railway Station, the “Zalizna Kramnytsia” – the official souvenir shop of the Ukrainian Railways. You can buy various conveniences there including luggage tags, water bottles, neck pillows, cool patriotic clothes, and beautiful flowers for those who are meeting loved ones.

The store is open 24 hours, which is very convenient for people who are traveling far or are returning home late at night.

Kyiv’s cultural life of is also gradually reviving, despite the ongoing war with the Russian Federation.
One of these important cultural events is the return of the “Wild Theatre”.

The “Wild Theatre” is an interactive theatre performance which involves the audience in their events. The theatre is located in Kyiv, but it does not have a permanent stage or hall, so performances are held in various unusual places, such as basements, old factories and parks.

The beginning of February was marked by the announcement of the resumption of the “Wild Theatre”. The first performance after the start of the full-scale war was presented to the public on 22 February 2023, exactly one year after their last production. The founder of the theatre, Yaroslava Kravchenko, recalls her speech to the audience before the start of the full-scale invasion:

“Good evening, dear audience! This may be the last show you see before the war.” Although the troupe tried to turn this remark to a joke, the tension of the situation was in the air all the same.

Тимчасовий мистецький простір МОТ на Подолі

Recently, the MOT or Module of Temporality, recently opened in the historic Podil area. Its temporary structure on Kontraktova Square attracted the attention of the city almost two weeks before its opening. This cultural initiative is implemented by the “don’t Take Fake” team, together with Balbek Bureau. This space will show exhibitions by Ukrainian and international artists, it also hosts a gift shop with Ukrainian brands. It also features special events: film screenings, lectures and excursions. The funds collected are directed to the restoration of cultural monuments that have suffered as a result of Russia’s invasion.

The cultural sphere does not remain aloof from current events, but rather supports our Ukrainian military with all its might. The Kyiv City Museum has organized a charity exhibition-auction in support of the special “Kryla” unit of the Ukrainian Armed Forces. “Kryla” has created its own flotilla of kamikaze FPV drones, which are used for reconnaissance and as a sniper weapon with a 10-kilometre range. The items on auction were military artifacts from various front line areas, as well as works of art, such as paintings by Maria Prymachenko’s grandchildren. The abstract artist Lubomyr Martyniuk, the “Epoch” auction house and the anonymous artist “Ol’svol’d”, who writes in a mediative state, also contributed their works.

Technological start-ups and well-known market leaders are not far behind in supporting the country’s culture and economy. Bolt and Visa donated 17 million hryvnias to help Ukraine in 2022, thanks to the active use of their services by Ukrainians. The brands jointly launched a large “thank you” campaign, within which they seek to express their gratitude to their customers and show that even ordinary things that seem imperceptible can lead Ukrainians to victory.

Ukrainian startup “Anima” has developed an online platform that can determine users’ mental state using a webcam. Using eye-tracking technology, the program analyzes users’ eye movements, determining their level of anxiety or depression and helps measure the progress of their therapy. The first users of “Anima” were military psychologists to determine the psychological readiness of the military for combat operations, but the platform can also be used by psychologists to diagnose various disorders such as PTSD, eating disorders and emotional burnout.

Despite all the difficulties, the economic and cultural crises, the large number of internally displaced, Ukraine continues to work and create.

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