Join an in-person event in the heart of New York to experience an interactive showcase of innovative technologies and art!

With Dignitas Ukraine’s first anniversary approaching, this milestone offers an exciting opportunity to celebrate and support a significant cause. This interactive event promises a unique experience with a variety of activities and refreshments that you won’t want to miss.

Dignitas Ukraine, a nonprofit organization that Spotlight Ukraine has been covering and also supporting through our Bonfire giving campaigns, leads several critical initiatives to support Ukraine and its people. These initiatives include providing drones for delivering essential aid and conducting surveillance in conflict zones, supplying front-line soldiers with mobile shower and laundry units, and offering IT and cybersecurity training for veterans. In just one year, Dignitas has made a significant impact, including supplying Ukraine with over 650 drones and more than 60,000 vitamins and medications, among many other contributions. Read our previous blog to learn more about Dignitas.

Mark your calendar for June 2nd to celebrate these achievements and support Dignitas’ ongoing efforts!

Date & Time:

Sunday, June 2nd from 2 PM to 6 PM

Location:

Ukrainian National Home
150 2nd Ave
New York, NY 10003

Tickets:

All ticket proceeds will go toward fueling Dignitas’ vital work. Buy tickets (donation) here.

The theme of this interactive event is “Innovative Technology and Art in the Ukrainian War,” promising an engaging and enriching experience for all attendees. Highlights include a live immersive visual art and audio experience, inspiring speakers, a “fly a drone” workshop with demonstrations of drone assembly, and a variety of refreshments and Ukrainian crafts for purchase. There will be something for everyone!

Read on to discover the event highlights and how it all came together.

The Artistic Heart of the Event: An Immersive Visual Art and Audio Experience

One of the highlights of the upcoming event will be an original immersive visual art and audio installation by Katya Goltseva, a multi-talented artist born in Ukraine and residing in New York City for the last decade.

A Chance Encounter: The Genesis of a Collaboration

Since the full-scale invasion, Katya has actively supported Ukraine through digital art projects and fundraising events. About two years ago, she participated in a fundraising event hosted by a nonprofit organization, where she crossed paths with Yulia O’Connell, the Development Director at Dignitas. They sparked a conversation, exchanged stories about their backgrounds, and have since stayed in touch, becoming good friends. When it came time to organize the first-anniversary fundraiser for Dignitas, Yulia reached out to Katya, who was eager to help.

Katya’s creative energy was immediately sparked with ideas for the event and how she could make it a memorable and engaging experience for attendees. In an interview with Spotlight Ukraine, Katya reflected on her experience attending many fundraisers in recent years. There was a familiar pattern: a conventional gathering at a rented venue, beautiful background music, refreshments, and casual mingling—pleasant events, but very much the same each time. Katya was eager to do something different, to create a highly engaging and interactive event with a range of activities that would be enjoyable for attendees of all ages. Together with Yulia and others from the Dignitas team, the concept for the event started to come to life. It would include a mix of art, entertainment, and activities, marking the beginning of her work to create a unique immersive visual and audio art experience for the event.

A Unique Artistic Experience

Katya blends her original drawings and digital animation with motion and special effects to create a dynamic visual presentation, perfectly synced to live music. With a background in VJing, Katya will create an ever-evolving experience at the event. She will read the room and the energy of the live audience, adjusting the colors, effects, and other aspects of the visual presentation in response and synchronizing with a live musical performance.

Every one of Katya’s immersive art installations is unique, as she creates the experience in the moment. To truly grasp the essence of the environment she creates, check out this video showing a snapshot of some of her previous works.

Get an Inside Look at Katya’s Creative Process

Katya’s art beautifully blends traditional drawing with contemporary digital techniques. In this video, we get a rare glimpse into her artistic journey as she immerses herself in creating artwork for the upcoming event using her digital tablet.

Preview of Katya’s Visual Art

Drawing deeply from her Ukrainian cultural heritage and personal experiences, Katya’s artwork for the upcoming event is rich with symbolism and meaning. She describes Ukraine as a vibrant country deeply connected to nature, a theme that echoes in her work. Growing up, Katya spent countless hours exploring nature with her grandparents, and this is reflected in her art, which often features animals, plants, and natural landscapes. Her art explores the profound connection between humans and nature, highlighting the psychological and emotional interplay within this relationship. She views the world as an interconnected and synergistic whole, where every element, from humans to animals to plants, plays a crucial role in the ecosystem.

Katya is also inspired by the renowned Ukrainian artist Mariya Primachenko, known for her colorful and whimsical depictions of nature and folk themes. Primachenko’s work is celebrated for its vibrant, imaginative portrayal of Ukrainian folklore and the natural world, which continues to influence and inspire many contemporary artists, including Katya.

A Glimpse at What’s to Come

Katya’s art for the event features the Tree of Life, a popular symbol in Ukrainian folk art often depicted on traditional Ukrainian embroidered shirts and towels, and Easter eggs. The Tree of Life symbolizes paradise, the bridge between worlds, and the origin of all life. It represents the past through its roots, the present with its trunk, and the future with its crown, embodying the endless cycle of life. Flowers represent constant renewal. Birds often adorn the tree, symbolizing protection and guidance. In some depictions, a female figure with raised arms symbolizes the Original Mother and embodies life itself. Colors play a significant role, too, with red symbolizing joy, love, and the sun’s energy.

Katya’s interpretation of the Tree of Life for this event is a poignant reflection of Ukraine’s current situation. Her artwork combines a unique depiction of the Tree of Life with vibrant colors, portraying the Ukrainian people’s resilience, strength, and vitality. Through digital animation, she brings this piece to life, depicting the stark reality of missiles raining down on the Tree of Life—a powerful metaphor for the ongoing devastation and the threat to Ukraine’s rich cultural heritage.

A Unique Fusion: Where Digital Art Harmonizes with Music

Katya routinely integrates music into her digital art projects, believing that music, like visual art, is a universal language that connects people across borders, cultures, and beliefs. For the upcoming event, Katya is collaborating with singer and songwriter Valeriia Vovk, who will perform live. Katya will synchronize the visual art experience with Valeriia’s performance. She is enthusiastic about this collaboration, remarking, “Valeriia is an exceptional talent, and her music adds an element of traditional Ukrainian folk music. I love the idea of combining traditional and contemporary art. I’m very happy that we had the opportunity to involve her.”

Valeriia, who resides in Boston, brings Ukrainian folk music to the world. Her songs capture listeners with memorable, heartfelt melodies, delicate storytelling, and beautiful vocal arrangements. Growing up in Odesa, a city on the shore of the Black Sea, and traveling all over the world throughout the past eight years, Valeriia draws inspiration for her music from nature, people, and the array of contradicting emotions we experience in our lives. Since 2014, she’s been using her voice and songwriting to tell the world about Ukraine and its continued fight for freedom. Even though Valeriia mostly writes and performs in Ukrainian, her music speaks to the heart and transcends language barriers, touching a global audience. Visit Valeriia’s website to learn more about her and to listen to her music.

Preview the Visual and Audio Experience

Get a sneak peek into the developing visual art and audio installation for the Dignitas anniversary fundraising event. In this video, you’ll see Katya’s evolving artwork accompanied by Valeriia’s enchanting singing. This preview offers a unique glimpse into how their combined talents will create an immersive and emotionally powerful experience for attendees.

And There’s More

The visual digital art and audio installation will be a highlight of the upcoming event, but you’ll also enjoy:

Michele Romeo: The Guitar Maestro

Also gracing the event’s musical lineup is Michele Romeo, Italy-born and NYC-based guitarist, producer, and composer. Michele has been passionate about music since he received his first guitar at the age of four. At ten, he began formal guitar lessons and attended the Centro Formazione Musicale in Palermo. Michele’s musical journey continued in Milan, where he studied translation and released his debut album, “Leaves,” in 2014. A scholarship to Berklee College of Music in Boston furthered his career, allowing him to master music production. Now in New York City, Michele composes and produces music, with notable projects including “Brookline (Harvard St.),” “Space Fantasy,” and “I Do Like You But.” His music is characterized by a blend of classical, jazz, and contemporary influences. Visit Michele Romeo’s official website to explore his musical repertoire further.

Drones: Innovative Technology in Action

As the event name suggests, innovative technology will come together with art. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn how Dignitas is supporting Ukraine through its drone programs. You will see firsthand how drones are assembled and operated and can participate in a “fly a drone” workshop, experiencing this cutting-edge technology in action.

Meet Our Guest Speakers

In addition to the interactive activities at the event, you’ll also have the chance to meet the artists and the people behind Dignitas. Meet Dignitas founders and other volunteers and learn more about this incredible organization. Lyuba Shipovich (shown left,) Dignitas Fund President, and Mariia Berlinska (shown right,) Victory Drone Lead, will be speaking at the event, sharing the Dignitas backstory and their insights on what is happening in Ukraine today, what’s needed most, and how you can help Ukraine win its fight to preserve freedom.

Wine and Refreshments

No celebration is ever complete without refreshments. Wine and refreshments will be served at the event, so get ready to enjoy!

Don’t Miss Out on This Unforgettable Event!

Date & Time:

Sunday, June 2nd at 2 PM

Location:

Ukrainian National Home
150 2nd Ave
New York, NY 10003

Ticket proceeds go to Dignitas, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Contributions to 501(c)(3) organizations are tax-deductible.

How You Can Help

Your support can make a difference!

Please consider donating to Dignitas, supporting the Ukrainian defenders and helping them do their job effectively— protecting the freedom, sovereignty, and the values of Ukraine and the Ukrainian people. Learn more about Dignitas here: https://dignitas.fund/

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