Six emerging writers from Ukraine and the UK have been selected for the online writing residency Ukraine Lab run by the Ukrainian Institute London in partnership with PEN Ukraine and Ukrainian Institute and funded by the British Council under UK/UA Season. The writers chosen to participate in Ukraine Lab will produce creative nonfiction pieces which will tackle global challenges through the prism of Ukraine.
The finalists of the Ukraine Lab selection:
- Sofia Cheliak, who has been documenting Russia’s war crimes and has applied to the residency ‘to get all the possible knowledge and skills to be able to witness’.
- Lena Kozar, who writes, ‘Our language, our history, and our culture are under attack. By writing about our mutual experiences, I strive to be a part of that resistance, which keeps them safe and brings them out to the world’.
- Kateryna Iakovlenko, who has been studying the creation and transformation of the heroic narrative of the Donbas and is looking for ways to ‘endow words with power and struggle’.
- Phoebe Matilda Page, who ‘would like to contribute to efforts to improve understanding of Ukraine’s history and culture, and hopefully encourage people with little knowledge about events leading up to the present-day to educate themselves and learn more’.
- Kris Michalowicz, who is inspired by Ukraine’s unique ‘literature, cuisine, and art, these universal cultural products that are made distinctly Ukrainian by a history of resistance to colonialism and a yearning for freedom’.
- Jonny Turnbull, who has been ‘immersed in the Ukrainian cultural and environmental scene and remains committed to ensuring’ his ‘academic and public writing serves those’ with whom he works ‘in the Chornobyl Exclusion Zone and others across Ukraine’.