Belarusian artist Ales Pushkin died while in prison
Prominent Belarusian Artist Ales Pushkin Passes Away Following Hospitalization from Prison
On July 11th, a somber announcement was made by the wife of Ales Pushkin via her social media platform, revealing the unfortunate demise of the acclaimed Belarusian artist. Pushkin had been transferred from prison to the intensive care unit of a hospital prior to his passing, and the circumstances surrounding his death remain shrouded in mystery.
Ales Pushkin was widely recognized for his multifaceted talents as an artist, curator, and activist. His journey took a distressing turn in 2021 when he was unjustly incarcerated as a political prisoner for his daring portrait of Yauhen Zhyhar, an anti-Soviet partisan.
Following a judicial ruling by Judge Alena Shylko, Pushkin was sentenced to five-year imprisonment. However, in November 2022, this sentence was subsequently replaced by a more severe one, as determined by Judge Aliaksandr Kirylovich.
Renowned for his impactful religious murals gracing newly constructed and renovated churches, Ales Pushkin fearlessly expressed his dissent by depicting Belarusian dictator Lukashenko in the depths of hell within one of his works.
Additionally, his extensive body of work includes thought-provoking portraits capturing the spirit of Belarusians who valiantly fought for their nation’s freedom, such as Yurka Monich, Lukash Semianuk, Yanka Filistovich, and others.
A testament to his unwavering dedication to his cause, Pushkin staged a performance in 1999 that involved the symbolic act of delivering a wheelbarrow brimming with manure to Lukashenko’s residence.
Pushkin’s passionate involvement in the protests that unfolded in 2020, following the widely disputed presidential elections, further underscored his relentless commitment to advocating for justice and democratic values.
The Belarusian community residing in the United States mourns the loss of an extraordinary individual — an artist of remarkable talent and an unwavering champion for the Freedom of Belarus.