Glorious Bastards: A Terrorist Country in Volodymyr Prokhorenko’s Drawings
A freelance artist. Studied at the Ukraine Typography Academy. Lives and works in Lviv.
— After finishing my studies, I worked as a graphic designer and created animation, which was a kind of a way to find my true self.
During the first two weeks of the full-scale invasion, I watched the news just like everyone else and got adjusted to constant stress. When I started drawing again, I wanted to show things that matter. Other than that, my life hasn’t changed — here, in Lviv, it wasn’t as bad as in the eastern parts of Ukraine or even in Kyiv.
Long before these events, I wanted to draw Lenin, however weird it sounds. It seemed incomprehensible to me, how such a small, bald, inarticulate man could have encompassed such a destructive force and left such a long bloody trail through generations and territories. My imagination painted a giant swollen bastard who blatantly moved forward, taking lives away and ruining all around. The same goes for Putin and Lukashenko. I decided to draw them naked to show their outright monstrous nature which they were trying to hide.
I decided to draw them naked to show their outright monstrous nature which they were trying to hide.
I used to live in Russia for some time, I had friends and family in this country. They are so deeply immersed in virtual reality, that even a homeless person feels like a chosen one. Propaganda has been drummed into Russians’ heads for generations. Now it’s all mixed up, boiling, and coming to life: Stalin, tsar Nikolai II, Hitler’s cap, Orthodox Christianity and many more. That’s how I came up with a toilet illustration. This society is so used to shitty propaganda, that it simply can’t live without it — it’s the coprophilia of a multimillion country.
Depending on how angry I am, creating an illustration can take a different amount of time. It took me about two days to draw one of the most popular images of a baby Lukashenko. But sometimes my emotions wear out and I can’t finish the work. I start by collecting references for their faces and then sculpt them with a ZBrush tool. Then I move those sculpted bastards to another program, to work on lightening and rendering. The final stage is my favorite: that’s when I draw in Photoshop, add hair, color and other things to make the creatures look more alive and ugly.
This is my art therapy and anger channeling. I think it works the same for people who are attracted to these illustrations. This is not a commercial project, at least for now. People can find these works in small art rooms in several countries.
This is my art therapy and anger channeling.