Maria Kulikovska was born 1988 in the harbour city of Kerch on the peninsula with the same name, which forms the eastern part of Crimea. She studied at the National Academy of Fine Arts and Architecture in Kiev and achieved 2013 a master in fine arts and architecture. After the occupation and annexation of Crimea through Russia, she became a registered refugee with nr. 254 in her own country.
'Homo Bulla' refers to an old Latin proverb expressing that the human existence is like a bubble. The human being in all its fragility and transience might become compared to a beautiful but fugacious soap bubble. The three sculptures by Maria Kulikovska, 'Homo Bulla' (white, red, green), are made from coloured soap and have been casted from her own body.
In 2012 Maria Kulikovska had realized a similar series of these translucent bodies, which are mysteriously shining, like precious gems from their inner core. They where installed on the site of a former factory for insulation materials in Donetsk, Ukraine. The area of the abandoned buildings was home to the Izolyatsia Foundation, which focussed on promoting and giving a home to contemporary art in the former heavy industries region in the Eastern part of Ukraine and is now active in exile in Kiev.
The soap sculptures were placed outside and exposed to rain, heat and weather. The process of change and partly, but continuous dissolution of the materials by nature, was stopped abruptly by violence. In June 2014, militia of the self-proclaimed ‘Donetsk People’s Republic’ seized the territory. Most of the artworks and facilities were vandalized and the sculptures were used for target practising.
The three newly produced 'Homo Bulla' sculptures were shown in 2015 at Saatchi Gallery in London, where the artist realized a seemingly very aggressive action. She entered the exhibition space naked and hit her own sculpture and casted body with a hammer. The deep wounds and scars stay visible on the green sculpture.