More than 30 works of art commemorating the Sandarmokh execution grounds dating back to the Stalin terror era will aid Ukraine under Russian attack. Gulag.cz, Czech Memorial and NESEHNUTÍ organise UAuction, a charity online auction to benefit Ukraine.
The auction of thirty works of art by mostly Russian artists will start on the first sad anniversary of the beginning of Russia's full-scale aggression against Ukraine, that is February 24, 2023, and will continue until March 10 at LiveBid. Lot descriptions are available in Czech and English. More information (in Czech) can also be found in this Facebook event.
The auction is taking place under the patronage of the Chair of the Chamber of Deputies of the Parliament of the Czech Republic, Markéta Pekarová Adamová.
Who can we help?
The funds raised will be used by the NESEHNUTÍ movement to provide material assistance to Ukrainian initiatives that, despite the Russian invasion, continue to help the most vulnerable populations or victims of sexual violence. Specific examples of how the NESEHNUTÍ movement helps in Ukraine can be found here - in Czech.
The funds raised will be used to purchase filters and disinfectant for the drinking water needed by the partner organization in Mykolaiv, Ukraine: for several months, the city's residents have been suffering from a shortage of clean water. Help will also go to an organization that helps victims of sexual abuse, whose work is complicated by frequent power outages caused by Russian bombing of Ukrainian infrastructure. Therefore, part of the funds raised will be used to purchase power generators. The Czech community in Ukrainian Zhytomyr will also receive financial aid to rebuild homes damaged by rocket attacks.
In addition, part of the proceeds from the auction will go to authors of art works. Most of them come from Russia; some were forced to leave their country because of their anti-war protests, while others, on the contrary, continue to stay in Russia despite all the difficulties. "“Not everyone in Russia believes in what the official government propaganda is feeding them and, regardless of the potential repressions, they feel the urge to express their frustration publicly,” says Štěpán Černoušek, the founder of Gulag.cz.
Works of art
The works of art to be auctioned were created for the exhibition Sandarmokh – Where the Trees Have Faces, organised by the Gulag.cz and Memorial association. The exhibition was shown in Prague, Brno, Liberec, and Opava, and tells the story of an execution site in Russian Karelia where more than 6,000 people of 56 nationalities, including six Czechs, were killed in 1937 and 1938 during the peak of the Stalin repression period. The exhibition also illustrates the destiny of the discoverer of Sandarmokh, historian Yuri Dmitriev whom the Putin regime sentenced to 15 years in a penal colony in a fabricated trial.
“The works of art offered in the UAuction were made to commemorate the tragical part of Russia’s history that was meant to be forgotten. One year into Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, they will help to make sure that these crimes, similar to what the Russian military is currently committing in Ukraine, will never be forgotten,” says Marek Hadrbolec of NESEHNUTÍ.
How to participate in the auction
1 Read the Conditions for use of the Livebid system here.
2 Register at Livebid here
3 Confirm your identity by filling in the required fields and providing your ID card
4 Read the rules of the UAuction here
5 See offered lots here
6 Maximum Limit Setting (24. 2. 12:00 - 10. 3. 18:00 CET)
Registered and logged in users can set limits on the works offered through the auction during this period. A limit is the maximum amount the user is willing to invest in the purchase of a artwork. The bidder enters this amount in the PRICE field and presses the LIMIT button. The CONFIRM LIMIT INSERT window then appears. After the LIMIT button is pressed again, the system will register the limit.
The minimum limit is the initial price of the artwork. The limit set by the user remains hidden from other auction participants (each participant can only see his own set limit). The user doesn't need to place bids himself - the system will automatically increase the bid amount. When the bid amount that the user set as the maximum for himself earlier is reached, the process stops. Users can see the current price for each piece of artwork put up for auction.
If one bidder has a lower limit for an artwork than the other, the first bidder will not receive the object put up for auction. However, he or she may participate in the auction and continue to compete with the other bidders by bidding.
7 Auction / Bidding (10. 3. 2023 from 19:00 CET)
The auction begins with the first lot and continues with the next lots according to the order listed in the catalog. During the bidding, the current prices of works are taken into account - those that were put up during the limit setting period. For each lot there is a time interval of 20 seconds, which is counted down directly on the screen under the lot, so the bidders can see how much time they have left to outbid. As soon as a bidder makes a new bid, the time countdown starts again. If no new bid is received in the allotted time, the lot is removed from the auction, and the lot is won by the bidder who placed the last maximum bid.