the flames of kyiv

Extremely detailed timeline poster, positioned in time and space. Get a glimpse of history of Kyiv, the city divided in its unity between the Eastern and the Western civilizations. 


Notable personalities

Key neighbouring

Historical layers


A battle
for governance 

Bread prices have jumped for the third time in a week. The residents were expecting nothing good, after the Bolsheviks, again, recaptured the city. Life taught them not to get attached.

They’d leave eventually. As the Germans did. As the Hetmanate did. As the Whites, and the Reds, and the anarchists, royalists, Poles and everybody else.

The key to the city gates changed its owner for up to 20 times in three years in the late 1910’s. It travelled from one gang to another, and ultimately fell into the hands of the biggest thug in town. 


The idealist

Vyacheslav Chornovil, a prominent politician and humanitarian was allergic to the Communist regime. The regime was responding with no less sympathy. During the Soviet era, Chornovil was provided with 17 years of imprisonment — almost the third of his life.

He had a chance of becoming the first president to a newborn Ukrainian state in 1991, however conceded to a sleezy ex-communist Kravchuk.

Beeing too honest for his time, he lost his life in a controversial car accident. Heavy odour of unwashed armpits and canned beef inside the Kamaz truck, unmistakably smelled of KGB.


The founding fathers

The streets of Kyiv witnessed a great deal of events. Hrushevsky’s independence act, Skoropadsky’s military parade along with German soldiers, Vinnychenko’s diplomatic ups and downs, the rear door of Petliura‘s railway car.

The young republic, in three years of its existence, went through all the stages of grief: from liberal democracy to a military dictatorship.

The 1917 Russian Revolution could have been a chance to finally build a sovereign Ukraine. However, thorn apart in all dirctions — Russia, Poland, Germany, Britain and France — a fight for Kyiv turned out to be a lost battle for unity.

The leaders later on found themselves in cafe’s around Europe. Each one in his own.

The streets of Kyiv were about to witness yet another wave of terror and destruction brought by the Red Collosus.


An international matchmaker  

Yaroslav the Wise, the Grand Prince of Kyiv, despite his strong phisique and energetic character, never fancied fights. Instead he saw diplomacy as a tool of greater efficiency. In particular, all of his children were forecfully married by will with the offsprings of European monarchs.

“This is the way to do it” — Yaroslav used to say. His semen traces deep into royal dynasties of Sweden, Norway, England, France, Germany, Poland, Hungary and Greece.


Bloody centuries

Tatars an Mongols, children of the steppes, united into the largest nomadic army — the Golden Horde — have been terrorizing the Eurasian continent for good five centuries. Unsurprisingly, their appearance in Kyiv resulted in the city’s complete annihilation: buildings burnt to ashes, residents enslaved or massacred.

Although the occupation gradually dissolved, Kyiv never gained its power back, interrupted by the swarm of barbarians, rising from the North.


A spiritual shepherd

“Hereby, the Great Prince commands to each and everyone, at noon the same day, go and baptize in the river Dnipro” — the announcement said.

Volodymir the Great always felt, that he was destined to something big. Since childhood, more than anything he liked to ruin and demolish. Anything put in his hands was wrecked to pieces. He used to carefully collect the debris after, sort the fragments by size and shape, and then, with the precision of a goldsmith, he was building such a structures, that people from all around the palace gathered to see the result, flabbergasted and amuzed.

He remained true to himself years after, when choosing the One-And-Only religion for his kingdom. The introduction of Christianity was followed by complete annihilation of paganism: idols, statues, villages and anyone opposed. 


Olga’s revenge

Avenging her husbands death was a matter of honor. She clearly knew, that no peaceful coexistence could continue. The Drevlians, the tribe that annoyed everybody, had to be erased from the face of the Earth. 

The vengeance plan was as simple, as her vision of marriage. It included: beating alive, boiling alive, burying alive, and burning alive. She called it “My 4B of Retribution”

She has stated her point. The Drevlians’ timeline ended there, in 946 AD. But the grand war of tribes was yet to come.


Midnight runaway

Viktor Yanukovych stood on a helipad, observing the servants packing his belongings. Only the essential items were to be taken.

Smoke slowly assended above the mansion. He definitely had to burn those documents. Light smell of treason reached his nostrils. He wasn’t cold, but still, his ostrich coat didn’t comfort him, as it had to. Despair slowly crossed his spine, touched the back of his head and finaly made its way to the corners of the eyes. “Big fellas don’t cry” — he clearly remembered that from prison. He wasn’t a little one. No he wasn’t.

The decision didn’t come easy. All the precious things, he so deeply loved, had to be abandoned. Rolls Royce, driven by the Queen Elizabeth, or at least the 99% equivalent, as he was told. Painting of him, as Napoleon, conquering the world. Ludovic’s vases, rhinoceros on the run, golden bread...

“Fall asleep as a rookie, wake up as a thief” — he repeated again and again. The mansion became smaller and smaller, reaching the size of a dot, as it finally disappeared in the clouds.

He was about to wake up in another city, far from home, with no money, no Napoleon hat, hungry and alone.

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