Drawing lines in the sand

This 8minute video shows the winner of “Ukraine’s Got Talent” drawing pictures in sand with light from underneath shining up to a projector. Sounds kinda strange at first, but don’t be fooled. I found it mesmerizing and quite touching.

Before you click the video link, you need to read this explanation first.

Kseniya Simonova, 24, uses sand and music to show how ordinary Ukrainian people were affected by the German invasion during World War II. She begins by creating a scene showing a couple sitting holding hands on a bench under a starry sky, but then warplanes appear and the happy scene is obliterated. It is replaced by a woman’s face crying, but then a baby arrives and the woman smiles again. Once again war returns and Miss Simonova throws the sand into chaos from which a young woman’s face appears. She quickly becomes an old widow, her face wrinkled and sad, before the image turns into a monument to an Unknown Soldier. This outdoor scene becomes framed by a window as if the viewer is looking out on the monument from within a house. In the final scene, a mother and child appear inside and a man standing outside, with his hands pressed against the glass, saying goodbye.

The Great Patriotic War, as it is called in Ukraine, resulted in one in four of the population being killed with 8-11 million deaths out of a population of 42 million, and you can see the very personal impact of her work on the live audience.

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