War-torn Ukraine has made a severe impact on the lives of Ukrainians - even those who emigrated prior to the war. Mykola Kovalenko, an Ukrainian designer currently hailing from Slovakia, feels a deep connection to the terrible events in his homeland. He distills his bitter emotions to create anti-war posters on an everyday basis. Most valuable of his posters are now available as NFTs. Mykola let us peek behind the scenes of his creative process.
Mykola Kovalenko is a Ukrainian-born globally acclaimed graphic designer. He boasts plenty of exhibitions and international awards. However, his first truly global exhibition has started only recently - with the Russian invasion in Ukraine and his first NFT collection of anti-war posters. What makes him create one poster a day?
“Imagine a grass field where you used to play football with your friends from primary school. Now tanks are going over it, stomping the ground, destroying houses around. WTF is that supposed to mean?” asks Mykola Kovalenko as a desperate outcry against meaningless violence in his hometown.
Although in the safety of Slovakia, his thoughts are currently in south Ukraine, where he was born. “The Russian army is trying to erase my memories”. In desperate need to do something, Mykola draws inspiration from his uneasy mind and creates a revolting poster, ridiculing the Russian army. In this poster, the Russian tanks are pinned up to a wall as a butterfly collection.
Another day Mykola hears great news about the advancing Ukrainian army. The countries of the West have given it a highly accurate artillery system called HIMARS. The soldiers used it successfully to blow up a bridge and cut off the Russian army's supply chains. “When I heard the news, I felt an influx of joy in my veins. I needed to celebrate this event with another poster”.
As you can see, Mykola's poster collection can be considered a calendar of his emotions. You can take a look at it and see the war event that happened on that particular day and how the creator felt. However, not all days of the war are eventful. “Sometimes, and I should say thank God, the situation is calm. No meaningless violence, no casualties. During these days, I don't feel any special impulses and it usually results in minimalistic posters. I made most of my abstract posters on those days.”
Mykola's posters as NFT are available on the OpenSea for purchase. The collection now has 80 common NFTs, a rare NFT drop is expected every Monday and Thursday and is offered for bidding.
The NFTs are a part of a global fundraising campaign called “BLOCK war with art. Start a CHAIN.” 80% of the generated money will be used to help war victims in Ukraine. If you want to help Ukrainians in need and become an owner of a unique anti-war poster, go get yourself an NFT!