A year of great changes
In 1986, humanity was confident. Nature has been conquered, the planet is entangled in transport routes, and energy has filled the most remote places with life.
Dictatorships that seemed eternal were falling in the world, and the word "perestroika" was first heard in the Soviet Union. The Mir station ascended to Earth's orbit, and the main cruise liner of the Soviet Union went to the bottom of the sea. Maradona scored the most famous goal in history, and Dynamo Kyiv won the Cup Winners' Cup.
1986 was a year of great change and great lessons. Take a look at it to better understand that time.
Terrible finale of the big race
The ideological war with half the world forced the Union to constantly prove that it could be even more powerful, faster, more. This applied to all industries - and, of course, nuclear energy. The party demanded ahead of schedule: hundreds of tons per shift, thousands of hectares for fields, five years in three years.
But behind the front of declared prosperity hid fatal mistakes, the silence of any failures and complete disregard for human rights.
The accident of April 26, 1986 was not the first for the USSR. Moreover, this accident was not the first even for Chernobyl itself.
In the end, radiation, an invisible enemy, did what the Union's eternal rivals could not achieve for 70 years - it shook and knocked the ear to its clay feet.
"There is none in the world
nothing but atoms
and emptiness… »
The exclusion zone has become a unique study area. Here, technologies for decommissioning power units and radioactive waste management are being developed, the behavior of radionuclides in the environment is being studied, and decision support systems for radiological accidents are being developed. The Chernobyl disaster gave impetus to the development of the concept of safety culture, which is the basis for the safe operation of more than 400 nuclear reactors around the world.
But still - why did the accident happen? Why did the "peaceful atom" get out of control? Finally, how long will the decay of radionuclides in the exclusion zone last?
To find the answers to these questions, we need to go back to the origins - and understand the nature of the atom.
In this house
They talk about those who sacrificed their lives on the night of April 26, and those who went to the best worlds out of longing for home. Those who risked their health, and those whose childhood remained forever in the ghost town.
Stories of courage, warmth, fear, hope and love. Stories about different times, circumstances and places, united by one thing — the Chornobyl stigma. Uncried longing.
The main owner
of the exclusion zone
When the Chornobyl accident took place, it was difficult to predict what consequences it would have for all living things.
However, since 1986, when people first left the city of Pripyat, then the 10- and 30-kilometer zone around the Chornobyl nuclear power plant, nature has been the main host here. The exclusion zone has become a unique reserve. In 2016, she received this status officially.
Today, scientists from all over the world are conducting research on the territory of the Chornobyl Radiation and Ecological Biosphere Reserve - the largest in Ukraine. The collected data are very important not only for Ukraine, they are used by the whole world.
Aircraft are officially banned from flying over Pripyat and Chornobyl. However, it is still possible to look at the nuclear power plant, the cities of Pripyat and Chornobyl, the secret object "Rainbow" and the abandoned villages of Polissya from a bird's eye view - thanks to VR.
The future of the exclusion zone
Over time, with the change of generations, with each new study, we experience and rethink Chornobyl as a phenomenon.
This block presents reporting and art projects, media library, international experience of disaster recovery, professional discussion on the future of the exclusion zone. We invite you to join the discussion.
In the language of posters, new and traditional media, we summarize "today" and look at "tomorrow" of Chornobyl.
The explosion of the reactor caused an explosion in the information space and the creative sphere. The sensitivity of culture and awareness of the consequences of the catastrophe launched a process of diverse interpretation of the Chornobyl theme. Classical and popular music, philosophical and historical texts, which step by step reconstructed the events of 1986.
As well as cinema - documentary and art, contemporary art and, finally, the computer game Stalker, which fascinated the whole world.
The media library presents works created after the tragedy.
There are many ideas for the development of the exclusion zone. They need to be considered in the light of the fact that Chornobyl is part of our historical heritage, still a dangerous place with an excessive background of radiation and at the same time a magnet for people from all over the world. Burial place of radioactive waste and one of the most protected areas in Europe. Chornobyl is an inexhaustible source of research and reflection for both scientists and artists.
Experts from various fields joined the dialogue on the future of Chornobyl.
The forest, as the final chord, grows today not only on the streets, roofs and stadiums of Pripyat, the forest grows a large part of our past, our memory, which is moving away not only from the catastrophe, but also from the Soviet era. The reactor explosion marked the beginning of the end of the empire. 35 years have passed - and the symbols of the once powerful, but completely false system, are also rapidly covered with moss and shrubs.
Finally, the forest grows here as a symbol of the absolute purity of nature, its extraordinary power of restoration, a new page and the beginning of a new life. We are sure that Chornobyl has it.
Thank you for this journey. Follow the news on social media CHORNOBYL.TODAY.
At the initiative of the Office of the President of Ukraine
Project initiative group
Exhibition project team:
Olena Parenyuk, Natalia Shevchenko, Valery Kashparov, Mark Zheleznyak, Mykola Steinberg, Oleksandr Novikov, Yuriy Skaletsky, Denis Vyshnevsky, Leonid Frantsevich
Yana Barinova, Alexander Sirota
Serhiy Myrnyi, Anna Korolevska, Natalia Dziubenko, Lyubov Morozova, Heorhiy Kasyanov, Tamara Gundorova
Mykhailo Vybodovsky, Oleksandra Kulinich, Natalia Stanko, Yaryna Kruchenyuk, Anastasia Ishchenko, Olga Gdulya
Kateryna Bolshakova, Serhiy Sofin, Oleksandr Burdin, Serhiy Goltvyansky, Olga Levchuk, Dmytro Polishchuk
Vyacheslav Balbek, Maryan Beresh, Anastasia Vinidiktova, Alina Vovkotrub, Sergey Gavrilov, Sofia Gupalovskaya, Vitalina Goshovskaya, Darina Ignatieva, Anton Lebedev, Lyubov Myronchuk, Oleksandr Martyniuk, Anastasia Partyka, Anastasia Romaniv, Tetyana Romas, Yevhenia Ryzhak, Olena Trygub, Borys Dorogov
Vyacheslav Balbek, Yaroslava Gres, Pavlo Gudimov
Yuriy Marchenko, Tetyana Kremen, Natalia Dzyubenko, Olena Parenyuk, Natalia Shevchenko, Kateryna Nosko, Andriy Alferov, Zoya Zvinyatskivska, Yaroslava Gres, Pavlo Gudimov, Tamara Gundorova
Olena Konkova, Oleg Nechiporenko, Tetyana Vatazhyshyna
Kateryna Draganchuk, Zakariy Nelson
Andriy Gorb, Dan Balashov, Maxim Bilousov, Artem Kizyuk, Alamy Ltd, GettyImages Ukraine, Shutterstock, Creative Commons, Depositphotos
Oleksandr Shkrabak, Yevhen Kozeko, Andriy Ushenko, Dmytro Koshyk, Maria Sypalova, Maria Bondar
ISD group, Photinus studio, Mykola Marusyk
Denis Antonenko, Dmitry Pazyura, Danylo Syabro
"Seri/hraf, Ilya Ugnivenko (Pictoric)
Production and installation of the exhibition:
RENTALL, D&D factory, Smart Production, ASA-group, Art Studio 184, UA Makers, Dmytro Pazyura, Yuriy Horpynych, Oleksandr Fil
Chernobyl National Museum
Museum of Civil Defense "Zirka polyn"
IGO "Center PRIPYAT.com"
Prymachenko family foundation
Pavel Gudimov Art Center "Ya Halereya”
Alexander Dovzhenko National Center
State enterprise "Ukrainian television film studio "Ukrtelefilm"
Central state film and photo archive of Ukraine named after H. S. Pshenichny
State enterprise "Ukrainian studio of chronicle and documentary films"
Folio Publishing House
Portal Publishing House
Komora Publishing House
Works provided by:
Pink Floyd, HBO, Natalia Zhyzhchenko, Roman Hryhoriv, Ilya Razumeiko, Yuriy Kosin, Kazuma Obara, Robert Polidori, Eduard Dimshits, Viktor Marushchenko's family, Maria Prymachenko's family, Ihor Yanovych, Maria Bykova, Maksym Dondyuk, Taras Polov Krylov, Victoria Ivleva, Yulia Sinkevych's family, Daniel White, Serhiy Lysenko, "Vopli Vidopliasova", FC "Dynamo" Kyiv, Association of graphic designers "4th Block", Oleg Veklenko, Oleksandr Syrota, IHO Center PRIPYAT.com, Chernobyllab, Igor Kostin's family, Chornobyl NPP, Yaroslav Vedmid, Igor Savichenko, Directory Films, Ukrainian league of copyright and related rights, Rostislav Omelyashko, State scientific center for protection of cultural heritage from man-made disasters, State museum of natural history NAS of Ukraine
Archives and libraries:
State archival service of Ukraine
Central state archive-museum of literature and art of Ukraine
State enterprise "Ukrainian studio of chronicle and documentary films"
V. I. Vernadsky National Library of Ukraine
State archives of Kyiv region
Kyrylo Tymoshenko, Heorhiy Zubko, Artem Bidenko, National complex "Expocenter of Ukraine", Kooperativ, Oksana Antonova, Sayenko Kharenko, Serhiy Diptan, Viktor Shkurba, Olena Betliy, Andriy Fedoriv, Alyona Pliska, Olga Babych, Serhiy Sakhno, Serhiy Gordienko, Holly Morris, Oleg Veklenko, Maryna Kryachko, Yulia Sinkevych, Oleg Tataryn and TM "ECOTEST", Oleg Grishchenko, Tetyana Moreva, Olga Vasylevska Borukhovsky, Yevhen Kozachenko, Tamara Krasytska, COTIS, Maryna Polyakova, Lidia Karpenko, Darko Skulsky, Oleksandr Krasovytsky, Oleksandr Sokolovsky and Tekstil-Kontakt, Valeria Tolochyna, Iryna Tkachenko, Yuriy Fomichev