Art for Holidays
Over 2000 years ago, before the time of Christ, people were carrying on the custom of decorating eggs. In creating these delicate treasures, the peasant folk were influenced by the belief that great power is embodied in the egg and they decorated eggs in the spring to celebrate the warming of the sun as it brought new joy and vigor to life.
With the introduction of Christianity to Ukraine in 988 A.D., the "sun" became the "son" and the ancient customs were absorbed into the Christian celebration of Christ's resurrection. On Easter the triangle designs on the eggs which had represented air, fire, and water now become the symbols of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The old supernatural powers in the decorated eggs were gradually attributed to almighty God. The new meanings blended so harmoniously with the old that even today the mixture of the pagan and Christian symbolism can be seen in the designs.
After the introduction of Christianity to Ukraine, the symbol of the fish became popular on the decorated eggs. The Greek alphabet spells out the word "fish" from "Jesus Christ Son of God Savior (ICHTHYS)". The Easter customs which the Ukrainian people enjoyed are rich in heritage. Their love of beauty can be seen in their hand embroidered clothes, in their folk songs, and in their beautifully decorated houses. This love of beauty perminated the rich religious holy period as well.  For Easter is not a three day period but a cycle of forty days when their age old associations with man and nature comes to a religious climax in the resurrection of Christ.
Ukrainian  Easter  Eggs
Exhibition of art work by Nadiya Ninarska-Marchenko
at Embassy of Ukraine in Washington D.C. in April, 2008.
Art of Sofia Zielyk