OAKLAND, Calif. – Clars Auction Gallery will offer the first printings of Girl with Candy by Ukrainian photographer Oleksii Kyrychenko. With his permission, the photograph was printed in Oakland in a limited edition of five, all of which will be auctioned in Clars’s April 24 sale, estimated at $1,000-$2,000 apiece. Kyrychenko has requested that half of the proceeds be donated to Come Back Alive, a non-governmental organization helping the Ukrainian military by supplying its troops with technical support and medical aid.
Kyrychenko’s reputation grew rapidly on social media after uploading the photo of his young daughter, who he posed holding an unloaded double barrel rifle with the stick of a lollipop jutting from her mouth. He shot the photo just days before Ukraine was attacked by Russian forces. Kyrychenko has been a photography hobbyist since his school days. He composed and captured the image because he wanted to show the world what a war-torn Ukraine would look like for its people and its children, should it come to pass. Despite his attempts to share the image on Facebook, they were not truly appreciated until his dystopian photograph became reality.
Kyrychenko said, “I posted the photo to a few Facebook foreign photo groups. They were banned immediately in those with Russian admins. The other groups were ambiguous about the piece. A lot of people criticized the photo for showing a child with a weapon. Finally, the photo remained posted in only one group.”
He went on to say that after the atrocities of the war began, “Suddenly the image had spread all over the world. The opinions of these photos have changed completely, as now the world has seen the real face of the Russian invasion.”
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