The Academy of Arts in Kyiv got devastated by Russian air strike

The Mykhailo Boichuk Kyiv State Academy of Decorative Applied Arts and Design reportedly sustained serious damage from falling fragments of a missile.

By Creatives Unite Newsroom
April 04, 2024

On Monday the 25th of March one of Ukraine’s leading academies of art and design sustained serious damage from a Russian missile strike in Kyiv.

"Part of the building of the Mykhailo Boichuk Kyiv State Academy of Decorative and Applied Arts and Design has been destroyed as a result of enemy air strikes on the capital. Together with rescuers and law enforcement officers, I am at the scene," said Rostyslav Karandieiev, Ukraine's Acting Minister of Culture.

Karandieiev said that an air-raid warning was issued a few seconds before the first explosions, so students and teachers did not have enough time to go to a bomb shelter.

"Fortunately, missile wreckage landed on adjacent premises. The sports hall, congress hall, and exhibition centre have been completely destroyed. Early reports indicate that there are no casualties," he added.

Additionally, the premises of the departments and auditoriums of the educational institution have been damaged.

As Olena Osadcha, rector of the Mykhailo Boichuk Kyiv State Academy, told Ukrainska Pravda.Culture, at the time of the Russian attack, the school was in the middle of classes, but the missile wreckage struck a room with no students or teachers inside.

"We had classes, but nothing was going on in the room hit by part of the missile. Classes were talking place…we have blended learning. The missile hit the gym, though. According to the schedule, there was no physical education class, and thank God, no one was injured, no one took the keys to the gym. The assembly hall and congress hall are partially damaged. They were also closed, because we mainly hold various events, exhibitions, and conferences there. And those were not scheduled for Monday morning," said Osadcha.

According to the rector, the rubble is currently being dismantled in the academy building, and the floors of the educational building are partially blocked, making it difficult to assess the total damage.

"The educational building is 20 metres away, possibly less. We have damaged windows, no idea what the situation is with the ceiling. In the workshops, windows were shattered, walls were partially destroyed, and radiators broke down. We can't even say how much damage we've sustained; we need to conduct an examination. The floors are partially blocked, making it dangerous to be there. The ceiling can only take so much," she said.

Osadcha clarified that the academy has two shelters; however, because the explosions occurred immediately following the issuance of the air-raid warning, the teachers and students did not have time to go down there: "This time, you know, the alarm went on and explosions followed literally right after. Everybody went down to the shelter, but when they came back to the surface, they were stunned by what they saw."

She confirmed that there was only one victim at the academy: the head of the monumental and easel painting department's laboratory. "When the alarm went off, she stood in a corner rather than beside the window. And this saved her life," the rector explained.

Earlier this month Unesco posted an updated list featuring 346 damaged or destroyed cultural sites across Ukraine since 24 February 2022, when the full-scale invasion began.

Photos by Andrii Dudchenko