Contemporary Discoveries

Contemporary Discoveries

View full screen - View 1 of Lot 19. The Fountain and the Swallows.

Sale of artworks to benefit the International Rescue Committee to help support families affected by the crisis in Ukraine

Pavlo Makov

The Fountain and the Swallows

Lot Closed

May 19, 01:18 PM GMT


1,500 - 2,500 GBP

Lot Details


Sale of artworks to benefit the International Rescue Committee to help support families affected by the crisis in Ukraine

Pavlo Makov

b. 1958

The Fountain and the Swallows

stamped with the artist's initials and dated 2022


44 by 57 cm. 17¼ by 22½ in.

framed: 60 by 72cm. 23⅝ by 28⅜ in.

Executed in 2022.

Donated by the artist, Kharkiv

Pavlo Makov was born in 1958 in Leningrad, USSR. He attended the Leningrad Academy of Arts, followed by the M. Samokish Crimean Art College in Simferopol, Crimea and the Kharkiv Art-Industrial Institute, where he specialised in graphic arts. Makov is part of the so-called Ukrainian New Wave generation of artists which came to prominence during the period of perestroika and Ukraine's Declaration of Independence in 1991. Makov’s conceptual practice consists of installations, drawings and etchings, the later becoming the focus of his work following an encounter with the works of Piranesi in the early 1990s.

The present work relates to the installation The Fountain of Exhaustion. Acqua Alta which takes centre stage within the Ukrainian Pavilion at the 2022 59th Venice Biennale. The three-meter-square wall installation – an updated version of an artwork initially conceived in 1995 – consists of 78 bronze sculpted funnels through which water tumbles down. The installation’s original premise was centred around 'the absence of vitality in society after the Soviet Union', yet the work reads equally pertinent now, symbolising, in the artist’s words, 'our global exhaustion' from a range of existential problems, ‘not only with nature, but also via fake news and politics.’ ("'I Am Not Running From My Home': Pavlo Makov, the Artist Representing Ukraine in the Venice Biennale, on Selling Art to Help Arm the Front Lines", in ArtNet News, 24 February 2022).

*The Consignor is donating 100% of the hammer price from the sale of this and other designated artworks, to be sold during Sotheby’s Contemporary Discoveries online sale held from May 13-19, 2022, to the International Rescue Committee (IRC), a not-for-profit humanitarian aid organization that is helping to support families affected by the crisis in Ukraine. In addition, in relation to these designated artworks, Sotheby’s will donate 1) 100% of its Overhead Premium to IRC, and 2a) where the artwork is consigned by Ukrainian artist(s), 100% of its Buyer's Premium to such artist(s), and 2b) for all other artworks, its Buyer's Premium, after deducting expenses, to IRC. No portion of the purchase price is tax-deductible. For more information about the IRC, visit