Tsymbal, Viktor

Image - Viktor Tsymbal: The Year 1933 (Famine). Image - Viktor Tsymbal: South American landscape Image - Viktor Tsymbal: Airplane graphic

Tsymbal, Viktor [Цимбал, Віктор; Cymbal], b 1 May 1902 in Stupychne, Zvenyhorodka county, Kyiv gubernia, d 28 May 1968 in New York. Painter and graphic artist. A soldier of the Army of the Ukrainian National Republic, he was interned by the Poles in 1920 and spend time in Polish internment camps. Having escaped to Czechoslovakia in 1923, he studied in Prague at the Higher Art and Industrial School and the Ukrainian Studio of Plastic Arts. He designed many book covers and bookplates and illustrated children’s books, primarily for the Svit Dytyny publishing house in Lviv. In 1928 he emigrated to Argentina, where he designed neorealist commercial posters for Argentinian, American, and European companies and won six awards for his graphic art. Tsymbal was active in Ukrainian community organizations in Buenos Aires, designed Ukrainian-Argentinian periodicals and theatrical scenery, and painted icons for Ukrainian churches there. In 1960 he emigrated to the United States of America and worked as a commercial artist in Detroit (1961–6). Tsymbal also painted fantastical Patagonian landscapes and neosymbolist religious, historical, and mythical compositions, such as People of the Stone Age, The Year 1933 (Famine), The Dnipro, 1941, The Creator, The Immaculate, and Ariel. His mezzotint portraits of Taras Shevchenko, Viktor Domanytsky, Viacheslav Lypynsky, Thomas Edison, Arturo Toscanini, Danylo Skoropadsky, Bohdan Khmelnytsky, and Ivan Mazepa are noted for their detail and workmanship. His political caricatures appeared in Ukrainian émigré periodicals (eg, Ukraïns’ka trybuna, Mitla). Solo exhibitions of his works were held in Buenos Aires (1936, 1948, 1956, 1959), New York (1960, 1961), and Detroit (1961, 1963) and, posthumously, in Detroit, Philadelphia, and New York. An album of his graphic works and paintings (edited by Sviatoslav Hordynsky) was published in New York in 1972 and an album of his caricatures (edited by Bohdan Pevny) in 1981.

Sviatoslav Hordynsky

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 5 (1993).]

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