Columbia University in the City of New York

Harriman Institute

A photo of a collection of Pysanky eggs.



The Pysanka: Coming Full Circle
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Location Note

1201 International Affairs Building
420 W 118th Street, 12th floor

This is a hybrid (in-person/virtual) event. Registration required for attendance. Please note that all attendees must follow Columbia’s COVID-19 Policies and Guidelines. Columbia University is committed to protecting the health and safety of its community. To that end, all visiting alumni and guests must meet the University requirement of full vaccination status in order to attend in-person events. Vaccination cards may be checked upon entry to all venues. All other attendees may participate virtually on Zoom or YouTube.

Please join the Ukrainian Studies Program at the Harriman Institute for a presentation by Sofika Zielyk entitled The Pysanka: Coming Full Circle.

Ethnographer and artist Sofika Zielyk will discuss the history, myths, symbols and legends of the ancient and unique pysanka tradition. Aided by a visually colorful pp she will illustrate the journey and evolution of the Ukrainian Easter egg from its pre-Christian origins to its relevant role in Ukrainian culture today.

The event will be moderated by Mark Andryczyk (Harriman Institute).

Artist and ethnographer Sofika Zielyk, a native New Yorker, holds a degree in Art History from New York University. She started creating pysanky when she was six. What began as a hobby has developed into a professional pursuit. Sofika has exhibited her work extensively, most notably at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the American Museum of Natural History, the office of the Security Council at the United Nations in New York, the Embassy of Ukraine in Washington, D.C., America House, a component of the US Embassy in Kyiv, as well as venues in Paris and Rome. Sofika was the first American of Ukrainian descent to exhibit her work in her ancestral homeland. In 1993, a bilingual book “The Art of the Pysanka” by Sofika was published in Ukraine. In 2014-2015 she received a Fulbright Scholar grant and spent 8 months in Kyiv, Ukraine researching “Folk art as inspiration and muse for early 20th century artists of Ukraine.


Event Video