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Jurko Gudź | Ukraine

Yuriy Petrovich Gudz aka Yurko Gudz (1956-2002) Ukrainian poet, prose writer, playwright, essayist, publicist, artist, journalist, translator, performer. An important figure of the Ukrainian literary underground of the 1980s/1990s. 

He was born in Zhytomyr. He graduated from the Geological Technical School in Kiev and the M. Drahomanov Kiev State Pedagogical Institute. He worked as an exploration geologist, art and history teacher in rural schools, museologist in an ethnographic museum, night watchman in a sanatorium, and he also worked in the editorial offices of numerous newspapers and magazines and in publishing houses. He ran literary workshops in Zhytomyr, where he lived the last years of his life and where he was murdered in unexplained circumstances. 

His first volume of poetry, which the author only realised 8 years later, was funded by an anonymous donor and published in 1990 in Toronto. 

He also published the poetry collections “Malenkyj koncert dla samotnioho chronopa” (Kiev 1991), “Wyszywky, chronopy, bez” (1992), “Mleko chronopiw hłosołalijne” (1994), “Borot’ba z chworym janhołom” (Kiev 1997),  while his novels  “Ne-my” and “Isychija” appeared in the magazine “Kurjer Krywbasu”. He also penned the collection of short stories “Zamowlannia newydymych kryl” (Ternopil 2001). His  prophetic narrative poem “Barykady na Chresti” was published after the author’s death. He won the Triuggio International Poetry Prize (Italy, 1994), J.Baczyński Foundation’s “Mirror Word” Award (USA, 1997), Ivan Ohienko Ukrainian Prize for Literature (2001).

a stylised, black and white portrait of Yurko Gudz