Home Before Dark

Home before dark stems from a biographical episode of the artist linked to the renunciation of his birth citizenship, Ukrainian, for the acquisition of another, Italian, by adoption. This event gave rise to a layered research focused on the individual and collective definition of the self, at a time when its geographical and temporal foundations are becoming more uncertain.

Starting in February 2020, a series of trips to Ukraine have punctuated a creative process of identity rediscovery and belonging to the post-Soviet context, whose boundaries and definitions are now more blurred and complex than ever.

The starting point of the artistic process is an archive, a place of memory by definition, here materialised in a chruščëvka (Soviet flat) and in the objects and images it contains, symbolic relics that are both familiar and alienating. It is in the familiar textures of carpets and family photos that the research is articulated, making visible, without filling them, the gaps of memory through a series of camouflages, erasures and concealments.

The images, whose languages combine self-portraiture, staged photography, collage and archive research, dig beneath the symbolic hegemonies that shape collective identities and reveal, without providing a definitive solution, the nostalgia of a past lost in the folds of a secret.

(Text by Rosa Cinelli)



Sofiya Chotyrbok is a Ukrainian visual artist. She lives in Milan, where she graduated in photography at Cfp Bauer in 2019.

Her research is focused on the theme of identity in the post-Soviet society and on the archive as intimate and domestic memory, transformed into universal human matter through photography, video and fabric. Her works have been exhibited at major international festivals and museums including Triennale di Milano, Paris Photo Off, Odesa Photo Days, Mana Contemporary (Chicago).

She won a scholarship in 2022 for the narration and research course held by Lina Pallotta at Officine Fotografiche in Rome and from 2023 she is an artist-inresidence at VIAFARINI in Milan.