Bearing Witness to War

Documenting Ukraine

An evening event hosted at the IWM that gave members of the IWM community the chance to hear first-hand from leading Ukrainian intellectuals and cultural figures about their Documenting Ukraine Projects.

An introduction and welcome was given by IWM Permanent Fellows Timothy Snyder (online) and Katherine Younger, as well as leading Ukrainian philosopher and journalist Volodymyr Yermolenko. The evening included a preview exhibition of art and photography from Documenting Ukraine projects. From eight artists working in different media, the exhibition is a preview of a larger exhibition to take place later in 2023.

Vital work is being done by those who create a record of the Russo-Ukrainian War, who capture the human experience of that war, and who make it accessible and comprehensible to the broader world. Launched in March 2022, the IWM’s program Documenting Ukraine supports scholars, journalists, public intellectuals, artists, and archivists based in Ukraine as they work on documentation projects that establish and preserve a factual record—whether through reporting, gathering published source material, or collecting oral testimony—or that bring meaning to events through intellectual reflection and artistic interpretation. Since that time, nearly 200 wide-ranging projects have been funded by Documenting Ukraine.

With 200 projects now, this event was designed to highlight the work of the Documenting Ukraine grantees and present early results from the program. It was an opportunity for grantees and round table participants to network with the wider IWM community. The evening brought together a variety of interested publics, including those who influence opinion and craft policy, to foster a greater understanding of both the program and the work of those it supports, who are bearing witness to war.