A feminist and an art activist, Maria Kulikovska was born in 1988 in Kerch, Ukraine. Maria received a masters degree in Architecture and Fine Art from the National Academy of Art and Architecture, Kiev. The artist has since won several prestigious prizes including the Cultural Capital in Umeå, Sweden (2014), the RutaRuna Project for young artists from Ukraine and Sweden (2013), the PinchukArtCentre Prize 2013 nominee, and the top 100 most influential figure in art in Ukraine.
Maria founded «Body and Borders», an international feminist organisation where she works with her wife and partner Jaqueline Shabo. The organisation aims to support and promote female artists. The nucleus of Mariia Kulikovska’s work is her own body, its perpetuation, its transformation and its decay.
Throughout her oeuvre, the idea of her body is transformed into architectural structures made from natural materials, such as salt, milk or sugar, in order to deal with ideas of production, construction and de-construction.
The pain of the situation that she and her family were living affects the expression of her art. "The expressiveness in your face became more radical but gentile and subtle in its beauty." Maria wrote an open letter, letting Manifesta Biennale in St. Petersburg know that she would not accept the invitation to participate in the pending biennale. Weeks after this letter, the creation of a new sculpture started, derived from Maria's art performance “254”. 254 is the number that Maria received when Ukraine had to give her refugee status post the annexation of Crimea by Russia. This Performance later became a sculpture with the same name, and was made and exhibited in Zamek Ujazdowski, Warsaw Poland, 2014.
In line with her ongoing feministic performance with “Body and Boarders” and her experience of lecturing and teaching everything from children, students to open sculpture workshops and lectures. In 2015 Maria again started to teach sculpture and inspire other to used there voice through art, and founded the art collective “Flowers of Democracy” with the purpose of de mystifying the fear of female body and celebrating the women’s important role, made invisible part of democracy, and in fight for democracy. The collective produced hundreds of plaster vaginas (Flowers) that where exposed in public group actions in several Ukrainian cities and created short term public sculpture park, where their flowers of democracy could be seen. Many reactions in all direction created a strong understanding of the need for more of actions like these, and at the time this is being written new action of flowers of democracy are being planed.