The Soviet monumental art collection is a separate exhibition featuring monuments, stained-glass artwork, mosaics whose historical, symbolic, and/or artistic dimension is a subject of discussion about the Soviet experience of Ukraine. The collection integrates examples of visual art as a form of Soviet memorialization and propaganda in public space.
On the table are copies of hundreds of photos from family archives. Sometimes it is difficult to understand where and when they were made. For example, in one of the photos, smiling women celebrate the New Year or Christmas. It was deported in the postwar period. Even in difficult conditions, people tried to normalize their lives and in the photos, which were often sent to relatives, pretended that everything was fine.
In 1944 the Red Army pushed German troops out of Western Ukraine. Still, it didn’t mean that peaceful life started.
Not everyone who lived in occupied Ukraine was a victim of Nazi mass violence. However, each of them had to choose how to behave. These behavioral patterns were very different: someone helped the Nazis persecute their neighbors, someone on the contrary – saved.
Room №4 is a recreated camp barrack, which became one of the symbols of the Nazi era. Throughout occupied Europe, including Ukraine, the Nazis created hundreds of places of forced detention and mass murder.
Western Ukraine officially became a part of the Soviet Union in November 1939. During 1940-1941 over 190 thousand people from this region were deported to Siberia and Middle Asia. The entire families were sent into exile and their property confiscated.
The second room tells the story of the beginning of World War II in the voices of eyewitnesses. It presents 10 stories of people from different parts of Western Ukraine, as well as Poland.
The first room depicts a typical apartment of a Lviv resident of the 1920s and 1930s.