At this year's Liste fair in Basel (13-19 June), two Russian exhibitors will give their places to Ukrainian counterparts. "In a strong and courageous sign of solidarity, our Russian galleries Fragment and Osnova decided to give their stands to their Ukrainian colleagues—The Naked Room and Voloshyn—and to forgo their own participation this year," says a Liste statement.
"We decided that at this time, when Russia is trying to brutally suppress Ukrainian voices, we have a responsibility to make space for and give visibility to Ukrainian artists and galleries. This was one of the best ways to do that. Our stand fee will go towards our booth next year," says Anton Svyatsky of Fragment gallery, which runs a space in New York.
The gallery used to run a space in Moscow. "We have moved our programming to New York and are figuring out what to do next," he says. “A number of galleries have closed and left the country. Those that work only with Russian artists have continued but it is unclear how much longer they can keep going with sanctions wiping out the creative sector.”
The Naked Room gallery in Kyiv represents artists including Olga Gaidash and Lucy Ivanova; Voloshyn gallery is also based in Kyiv, and recently organised a pop-up show in Miami called The Memory on Her Face (until 28 March), which addresses "the issues of national identity, destruction and renaissance", the gallery says.
Founded in 1996, Liste Art Fair Basel is described online as "the international fair for new discoveries in contemporary art". Eighty two galleries are due to take part in the fair this year with 18 galleries making their debut including CLC Gallery Venture from Beijing and Athens-based Hot Wheels. The Liste statement adds: “Additionally, some of our Eastern European galleries will use their presence at the fair to give Ukrainian art a platform by expanding their presentations with Ukrainian artists.”