Olena Khlystun


The article reveals the richness of the symbols and rituals of the Ukrainian folk culture, organically linked with the people's festive aesthetics with versatile ritualization of the national lifestyle in all its manifold forms such as icon painting, embroidery, painting, etc. It is declared the availability of the intrinsic, natural connection of the national calendar with the cultural and historical memory.

The calendar holidays and ceremonies are branched folklore complex in which the rational social experience and religious and magical beliefs, the folk aesthetic tradition and archaic customs organically combines. The annual agricultural circle is fixed by the winter, spring, summer and autumn holidays, rites and customs. The important components of the celebration of Ukrainian calendar holidays have been the ritual table, the household and family magic, the celebration of the ancestors, the predicting of the the future, the ritual rounds of the mummers with the congratulations and other theatrical performances, the folk entertainments and so on. The folk festivals are accompanied by the performance of the traditional calendar-ritual songs associated with each season of a year. Consequently, none of the ritual action and the preparation for it is without the folk art with its signs and symbols, the artistic approach to its realization.

The ceremony is the important part of the tradition, which is the basis of the archetypal symbols of the world ordering of the every nation, This collective conditional symbolic act vividly embodies the ideals and spiritual well-established artistic values and is the specific figurative and symbolic action, through which the most important events in the public and private life are issued, authorized and marked, the forms of the communication are enriched and the socialization process is activated.

So the rite appears as the logical conclusion of functioning of the ethnocultural colored universe, stands as the final decisive cultural component that provides the traditions of the semantic completeness and integrity. All genres of the Ukrainian art have the richness of the Christian symbols. The Ukrainian art of the icon painting is a gem of the world sacred art, in which the sincere faith and deep understanding of life's journey and destiny of the man in this world are

objectified. These priceless of philosophical and artistic achievements of the mankind have always been unique and relevant to each stage of the cultural development.

Recently, the interest in the sacred art, including the icon art especially is growing. Perceiving the icon as the highest achievement not only in the material, but spiritual culture, the modern masters are actively studying it, popularizing, creating, somehow referring to the rich experience of the past art history.

The independent development of the iconography was continued in the Byzantine Empire near the end of the eleventh century. And, since then, according to S. Bezklubenko it just remarked, all that is produced in the next century. The set of themes, motives and images in the Orthodox art tradition is marked by the sustainability of the artistic symbolism that appears through the prism of the ethnic and cultural history of the calendar ritualism, social and consumer specifics and the specifics of the artistic styles. These are personalized the iconography of Bohdan Khmelnytsk, plot personalized iconography of the Cossack Mamay, the iconographic specifics of the Baroque, Renaissance, classical, etc. in the overall context of the national culture.

The archaeological evidences of the scientists determine the birth of the ornamental motifs in the embroidery in the period of the development of the Old Slavonic agricultural community. Then it emerged the general features of the traditional Ukrainian art of the art embroidery, essentially ceremonial on its essence, preserved to the present. For example, at the towels they were not just applied and decorative purposes, but also for use in the ritual actions. The ornaments were embroidered with the distinctive symbols that using certain rituals of influence on the lives and health of the believers, serving them the reliable talisman.

Thus, the Ukrainian folk culture has inherented the richness of the symbols and rituals, connected with the festive folk aesthetics, with the multifaceted ritualization of the folk lifestyle in the variety of its forms such as iconography, embroidery, painting and so on. Although the Ukrainian national study of the fine art in the context of the traditional symbolism shows the facts of the historical and cultural borrowing, caused by its historical dynamic and close relationship. Its essential artistic qualities and significant differences are formulated, particularly given the thoroughness of the folk imagery and symbols of the cultural specific of the regions. 


symbol; symbolism; ritual; ar; folk art; calendar holiday; festive and ceremonial culture; Ukrainians