Australian artist Guido van Helten, known for his painting of Chernobyl’s Reactor 5, just pushed the boundaries of street art all the way to the frontlines of a conflict that garners less attention than it should. Guido just completed a large mural on an abandoned apartment building in the eastern Ukrainian town of Avdiyivka, where government troops battle Russian-backed separatists in a conflict that has lasted two and a half years and claimed the lives of nearly 10,000 people.
Working again with Art United Us, Guido painted a mural of 73-year-old teacher Marina Marchenko, in the hopes of giving people in the town more to think about than just war. Donning a flak jacket and helmet, Guido worked on the mural while worrying about mortar shells, machine gun fire, and resident’s interest in the project. Some were enthusiastic while others didn’t see the point.
Check out the amazing photos below.
Original story written by Amos Chapple from Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. Read for more detail into the individual photos.