On the last Sunday of August the best masters of art blacksmithing gathered in the capital of Donbass to take part in the festival of blacksmiths art devoted to the 135th anniversary of Donetsk. Traditionally this festival was a part of the Roses of Donetsk city festive show. But in 2004 it was named the Forged Figures Park and became All-Ukrainian
On 26–27 of August 50 delegates from 12 cities of 10 regions of Ukraine came to hospitable Donetsk to participate in the remarkable show. There were blacksmiths, designers and heads of 24 large and medium-sized blacksmiths enterprises of the country. The show was organized by the Ukrainian Gefest blacksmiths enterprise and The Magazine of Metal under the aegis of the Donetsk mayor Aleksandr Lukyanchenko. The history of Donetsk blacksmiths festival dates back to 1998 when it wasn’t hold in such a big way and in such a wonderful place as the Forged Figures Park. This unique park was established in 2000. And three years later (thanks to the titanic organizational efforts of Victor Burduk and considerable financial expenditure of the Ukrainian Gefest blacksmiths enterprise) there were 32 forged sculptures in the park.
9 more works have been installed in the park in course of this year festival. One of them was made by joint efforts of the best blacksmiths of Ukraine. The frame of the five-meter-high Sweethearts Pavilion with the Cupid vane was forged by blacksmiths of three Donetsk enterprises: the Ukrainian Gefest blacksmiths enterprise, the Opal blacksmiths enterprise and the Lekam Co Ltd. It was interesting that all the participants of the festival invited by The Magazine of Metal made bunches of forged flowers and brought them to Donbass capital. These small masterpieces were fixed on the pavilion and made it look like the genuine work of blacksmiths art. 24 bunches by blacksmiths from Kiev, Ivano-Frankovsk, Kharkov, Simferopol, Odessa, Lutsk, Aleksandria and other cities were presented to people in love of Donetsk. It is nice that the half of bunches on the pavilion were made by Donetsk masters. By the way, they should be thanked for the fact that hundreds of Donetsk citizens and guests of the city gathered on the square behind the Donetsk City Council building. Only for 10 years they have restored blacksmiths art in Donbass and put it on the podium of fashion. Nowadays it is fashionable and prestigious in the east of Ukraine to decorate buildings with the forged works.
The six-hour-long show was full of events, ideas and creative aura. Its main part was the demonstration of the virtuosic skills of blacksmiths in the very heart of Donetsk. We are very grateful to the city authorities and personally to the city mayor Aleksandr Lukyanchenko for the financial support of the Forged Figures Park – 2004 festival. It was a contribution to the development of cultural image of Donetsk.
Young and old citizens like this wonderful park where they can not only look at but also touch small and large masterpieces of blacksmiths art.
On Sunday at 10 a. m. the smith’s hammer made a rod hot and the first furnace started its work. Seven more furnaces also puffed smoke at once. When the smoke cleared away six blacksmiths of the Ukrainian Gefest blacksmiths enterprise had been forging garden utensils. It was the subject of the festival. Blacksmiths of Lutsk Dzherelo private enterprise worked at the seventh furnace. When the city mayor appeared the attention of the public was diverted to the stage and then to the Sweethearts Pavilion. The mayor himself unveiled it and everybody could see the main exhibit of the Forged Figures Park.
The newly married couple was the first to enter the pavilion and bless it with their kiss. This example has been followed by dozens of young Donetsk citizens.
The mayor and the newly married couple went to have a look at the new also original and delicate forged figures and the masters of the Ukrainian Gefest blacksmiths enterprise started to fix the presented forged bunches with author’s plates on the pavilion. Three or four hours later the work on the pavilion was finished, the fires of furnaces were put out and the wonderful art works were sold by auction. Gained money was given to the Kuybyshev orphanage in Donetsk. Each of the participants and visitors of the really grand and full of the creative inspiration festival had a lot of unforgettable impressions. But maybe, the most important event that happened on the 27 of August in Donetsk was the fact that the Forged Figures Park – 2004 festival initiated the creation of the Union of blacksmiths in Ukraine. Its informational partner is The Magazine of Metal. For going through all the necessary juridical procedures connected with the registration of a new powerful organization the initiative group was elected. Its members were the famous blacksmith Vladimir Demin (Kiev), the director of the Kiev Tant’ema blacksmiths enterprise Aleksey Yurchenko, the director of the Ferrum private company (Odessa) Aleksandr Gumenyuk, the director of the Arma company (Ivano-Frankovsk) Sergety Polubotko and the chief editor of The Magazine of Metal Igor Rudenko.