Winter Cycle of Holidays

We are so excited for all the upcoming holidays of the Winter Cycle!

Koliada - Kosa Kolektiv is going to be carolling with a traditional Vertep and old-time koliady (carols). More info to follow soon.

Contact us if you would like to be a part of this! Or... if you would like to have us sing at your home or party. We are raising money for our future artists exchange project.

Jan. 8- confirmed date for koliada, beginning in front of St. Nicholas church at Trinity Bellwoods Park, continuing on to the Communist's Daughter bar on Dundas St.


Before I talk about our future interactive map from Marshrutkaevents, I would like to thank everyone who helped set up, clean up, tended the bar, the food, those who sang, and played, and to everyone else at Marshrutka art show at KUMF gallery. Thank you for all the support!!!

Now to update you on our future events and projects...

This Saturday, December 3rd, we will be at the annual OCAD Book Arts Fair!

bookarts fair posterCome stop by to say hello and check out our zines, tea, photos, and printed stories for sale. More details on the facebook event page...

Next week is Bozena's birthday and we will be celebrating

St. Andrew's Eve- Свято Андрія Калити .

Do you remember...the old-time fortune telling festivities? If is okay! You must join us next Friday. Note: it is a potluck event, so please bring food and drinks! Dress for the occasion too! More details to come...

Andrew's eve, 2010

On top of all that... we are also hosting a folk Melanka

(old Ukrainian New Year's) for the Kosa community!

The celebration will take place on

Saturday, January 21st at St. Vladimir's Institute.

It will feature traditional games, singing and dancing from Ukrainian village folk culture.

Everyone is invited to come and dance the night away with us and the

Lemon Bucket Orkestra and all our friends from Toronto and beyond!

Stay posted for a very busy winter season-

more singing and folk dance workshops to come in December, and folk crafts too!

Marshrutka - Art gallery event

Dear Friends,

Kosa invites you to our upcoming gallery event - Marshrutka . Artworks are inspired by travels to Ukraine and Poland, visiting friends and family, and coming to terms with the modern state of our ancestral lands. The show will explore cultural roots through photography, painting and folk singing. Come out and enjoy all the staples of time well spent- homemade food, homegrown music, good company.

Check the poster above for event details.

We would love to see you there !

Love, Kosa

Fedora Upside-down Festival

Kosa is going to be at the Fedora Upside-Down festival!

"A one-night festival of non-stop live music from Toronto's most exciting urban folk collective!"


including performances by:

Michael Louis Johnson and Rambunctious Ventanas Roofhoppers Ada Dahli Freeman Dre and the Kitchen Party Nick Teehan Boxcar Boys Flamenguitos Del Norte Maria Bonita and Band Maracatu Mar Aberto Lemon Bucket Orkestra

theatrical performance by:

Last Year's models

and art by:

Josh Barndt and Adrian Dilena of Whippersnapper Gallery Kosa Kolektiv
Tickets $15 advance, $20 at the door INCLUDES A FREE LIMITED EDITION COMPILATION CD

Tickets available at: Sunrise Records - 336 Yonge Street La Palette - 492 Queen Street West by email:

check it out on facebook!

Artist Exchange Program

Folk-Style Painting Workshops- Coming Soon!

In September 2012, kosa kolektiv will host an artists exchange program to bring two recent Ukrainian Art School graduates to Canada to teach folk painting. We are excited about bringing these talented artists to Toronto to share their folk knowledge and expertise ! In supporting them, we believe that we are combating cultural loss by keeping this increasingly rare art form alive.

 Check out the pictures above for samples of their work.

As a part of our program, we hope to offer 3 types of courses over the span of 4-6 weeks. Courses to be offered are : Folk Iconography, Folk Iconography on Glass, and Petrykivskiy style Flower Painting. Participants can sign up for all 3 courses or choose the one that is most appealing to them. As the culmination of the course, we’re planning a group exhibit/ art sale to showcase students’ work. All courses are to be held at St. Vladimir's Institute, 620 Spadina Ave. at Harbord.

This course is available to people of all ages and levels, with a sliding scale fee to make it accessible to students.

If you are interested in learning an ancient craft from authentic artisans, stay tuned, we’ll have more details closer to the date ! Join our kosa facebook group or e-mail us at to join our e-mail list.

This initiative has been generously supported by the Shevchenko Foundation and family and friends in the Ukrainian Community.  If you are interested in volunteering for the artists exchange, we are looking for Ukrainian/English language translators and artists.

To make a donation

make out a cheque to Kosa Kolektiv

Every little bit helps ! Thank you in advance to all the people who have supported us !

Love, Kosa Kolektiv

(Marichka, Oksana, Bozena, and Steph)

Collaborative Painting Project

3-way painting with 3 lovely ladies in Legedzine, Ukraine

Kosa member Bozena Hrycyna spent the month of July at the artist residency Echo-Луна in Legedzine, Ukraine living with artist Naomi Uman and other visiting folks.  Among other things, she had the opportunity to collaborate on some fun folksy paintings with Naomi and Agitsa Bo-hi.  These 3-way paintings were included in the online exhibition of the collective 3-art, for the month of September. Thanks to Andrea Wenglowskyj for inviting us to be part of her project!

You can view the project on the 3-art website! (just scroll down) Enjoy!  :)

Ivana Kupala in the storm- a night to remember!

On the eve of June 22nd Kosa invited everyone to celebrate the traditional summer solstice on the shores of Lake Ontario. An amazingly beautiful and diverse group of folk lovers arrived to our somewhat hidden and secluded spot on the beach, where a creek flowed into the lake, beside a big weeping willow tree.  Despite the erratic and apocalyptic-looking weather we managed to enjoy a wonderful night of singing, dancing and games.

Girls took shelter under the big willow where they sang and wove wreaths of wild flowers while the boys and children built a wonderful bonfire.  Everyone generously shared food, drinks and musical talents.  Once the sun went down we crowded next to the creek as the girls tossed their wreaths in the water and anxiously watched as the men waded in after them.  In the confusion pairs were eventually formed and they took turns leaping over the fire.  The atmosphere was great! Only the weather challenged us, and even the strong winds and rain didn't stop us from dancing the night away in the downpour...

Hopefully next year the sun-worshipping holiday will actually take place on a warm and sunny day! To all who came out- you are amazing! Kosa is so glad to have met so many kindred spirits interested in and appreciative of our folk roots. We had such an incredibly fun time! Thank you and see you next year!!

Ivana Kupala

This Wednesday June 22nd, Kosa is hosting its first Ivana Kupala! This ancient pagan holiday celebrated in Slavic nations. It is the eve when young people meet at rivers and bodies of water to light bonfires, sing and perform rituals associated with fertility.

Everyone is invited to Humber Bay Park East (on the beach) to celebrate!

Festivites start at about 6 pm. We will be picking flowers to make wreaths, eating some food (it's a potluck! Bring whatever you can carry!). The evening truly begins with the setting of the sun. Friends will have to leap over the bonfire, throw wreaths into Lake Ontario and search for the enchanted fern that brings good luck to whoever finds it.

Music and dancing promised until sunrise.

The Art Cellar- art show

Dear friends,

Kosa Kolektiv cordially invites you to The Art Cellar, a unique and reinvented art opening, on Friday, June 10th.

Doors open at 7:30pm at St. Vladimir's Institute, 620 Spadina Rd., Toronto.

There will be local art, music, food, and drinks for your enjoyment!

This transformed space and art installation will include a collection of diverse, eclectic and affordable artwork created by young and emerging artists in Toronto’s arts community. There will be photography, printmaking, painting, drawing and multi-media on display, which you can purchase for a good cause. Artists will be donating a portion of their sales to Help Us Help the Children's programs, which include summer camp and scholarship fund.

There will be live performances by Toronto’s musical collaborators Fedora Upside Down, including Lemon Bucket Orkestra, Freeman Dre and the Kitchen Party, Ada, and friends.

All proceeds from the event will go to Help Us Help the Children and Kosa's future Artist Exchange project.

St. Vladimir Institute graciously supports this event.

Facebook event here

End of Pysanky Workshops

Kosa's 2nd annual series of pysanky workshops have come and gone. The three workshops were all so successful and had great turnouts! Overall, we raised a little under $1000 which three Kosa members will be hand-delivering to Sister Romana at the Pysanka Orphanage this July. [slideshow]

Kosa Kolektiv would personally like to thank all their wonderful friends who came to help or entertain during the workshops. We would also like to thank Koota Ooma for sponsoring our event by donating easter egg making supplies and Lemko Association of Canada for taking some more amazing photos.

the kosa update

Reminder to all those who haven't registered yet...

the April 1oth workshop is now full.

If you haven't registered for the April 17th workshop, please do so (before there aren't any spots left)!

Latest news: We have new designs for pysanky pins and will be selling them for a $1 at the workshops. We will also be selling how to make your own pysanky at home kits and other crafts created by Kosa Kolektiv.

In the future: Remember Organic Streetscape Projekt? We haven't forgotten. After the Easter season we will be putting our efforts into organizing some more art happenings with Ukrainian and Canadian artists and will let you know how you can contribute.

Hope to see you soon,

-oksana and steph

Help Us Help the Children

[slideshow] It didn't take very much effort to convince Oksana and myself to return to Ukraine this summer. We have started volunteering with an organization called Help Us Help the Children, and hope to be working with this organization as camp counsellors this coming August! HUHTC's main goal is to provide aid and support for orphans in Ukraine.  One of its biggest projects is sending orphaned children to summer and winter camps in Ukraine, run by both Canadians and Ukrainians.

This past weekend, Oksana and I went to Montreal to help out at a wine and cheese fundraiser for HUHTC. With virtually no idea what the camps were really about, Oksana and I were very excited to learn more about HUHTC and its camp programs. Thanks to conversations we had in the long and cramped van ride, and at the Montreal fundraising event, we learned a lot!

We learned that Help Us Help the Children has now provided 18 years of aid to orphans all across Ukraine. It first started with providing material relief to orphanages all over the country but eventually led to the creation of summer camps in the Carpathian mountains.  Its camps are not only very fun, but also very educational. The children and teens acquire life skills such as sewing, computing, and budgeting money which that they will use in their adult lives. They also receive information about the anti-human trafficking initiative, which tries to raise awareness about women being sold into the sex trade and how both men and women can avoid being sold into some form of labour bondage. We also learned that once the orphans turn 18, they are turned away from the orphanage and must fend for themselves.  About 50% of boys, within 5 years of leaving orphanages, become part of organized crime, and about 50% of girls enter the sex trade.  It is very scary to think that these circumstances become harsh realities to many orphans in Ukraine. But there is hope that these camps will help some of these children and teens learn how to help themselves.

Help Us Help the Children has also created a scholarship fund where Canadians can donate money for a child to go to school for a year. It costs approximately $1500 CAD for room, board and books (which, in my opinion, isn't very much at all).

Oksana and I are really looking forward to this new (and most definitely emotional) experience and have already started planning an art event that we hope will help raise some funds for this worthy cause.


We're Baaaaaack

Hello everyone! Kosa has finally reunited under the starless skies of Toronto, where Stephanie would sit, waiting for the day to finally arrive. And it has! Marichka, Bozena and Oksana have all made it back safely with many stories stowed in the their luggage and on their cameras.

And... on another happy note, the money we collected through our Pysanka Workshop and other fundraisers for the Pysanka Orphange in Potelech, Ukraine was finally delivered in person by Oksana, Bozena and friends. They made the trip to Potelech to visit the children living under the care of Sister Romana and her fellow nuns and were amazed at the stunning condition of the newly renovated building.  And of course, thrilled to meet the children, who were adorable.


(Photos to be posted soon, along with information about this year's Pysanka Workshop!)

And so, this is just to let everyone know that we have already started various projects, including moving into our secret art space for our crafting! (If anyone has anything they would like to donate, an old couch, coffee table or Group of 7 original painting, we'd be much obliged!)

Pencil us into your busy lives during Lent,


the future...

Kosa would like to thank everyone for coming out and supporting them this winter season! Three of our four members are flocking to the warmer climates of Europe (Poland, Ukraine and Italy) to hopefully gather more supplies for our crafting endeavors. Alas, they are also leaving Steph alone in Toronto, wishing that she too could join them (but will settle for someone taking her out for coffee or reading her a romantic acrostic poem). For all those wondering where they will see us next, that same question is also floating around in our heads... Just keep checking our blog for future events! We leave you with a little accordion music by Kosa's good friend Tangi Ropars who won the title of "Toronto's Best Busker" last month! Congrats Tangi!


"Andrew's Eve" Вечорниці на Андрія-Калити

Kosa invites experience Andrew’s Eve!

An evening of folk traditions that include fortunetelling games and matchmaking fun!

"In Ukraine, St Andrew's Day is celebrated on 13 December with fortune-telling and parties where pancakes and pastries were used for games which were supposed to help girls find a husband. It was also a time for mischievous pranks such as putting a plough on a house roof or taking a gate off its hinges - all pre-Christian traditions connected with courtship and marriage."

Traditionally Andrew's eve is all about fortunetelling related to matchmaking and flirtatious energy.

The evening will start out with some fortunetelling games organized by Kosa ladies and company. Then, we will all guess our romantic destinies and enjoy dinner together to the sound of folk music brought to us by Lemon Bucket Orkestra and friends!

When: This Friday, December 10th at 6:30pm Where: Trembita bar, Christie Station, 83 Christie St. (Ukrainian Cultural Centre) Why: to celebrate Andrew’s eve! Who: Friends/Kosa followers What: fortunetelling games, potluck dinner, music by Lemon Bucket Orkestra! How: Dress festively- in folk dress /gypsy/ragamuffin/fun clothing

**This is a POTLUCK DINNER** (Boys bring need to bring honey and dinner (vegetarian) dishes Girls provide the desserts/sweets

If there are any fortunetellers (palm readers, card readers, etc) please contact Bozena at to make sure your talents are featured!

See you all on Friday, where destinies will be decided by baked goods and other mysterious old-fashioned methods! ---------------------------------------------

Колектив Коса вас запрошує на Андріївські Вечорниці!

в цю пятницю 10ого грудня о 7-і годині в барі "Трембіта" 83 Christie St.

Вечір почнеться з традиційними іграми і гаданням (кусання калити і т.д.) і продовжиться зі спільною вечерею. Музиканти з гурту "Lemon Bucket Orkestra" будуть всіх розвеселяти народними мелодіями. Прийдіть пошукати вашу долю! Прийдіть гадати яка у вас буде любов!

Просимо всіх хто зацікавленні брати участь щоб дали Божені знати (скільки осіб сподівати і що думаєте принести на вечерю). Це пісна "potluck"вечеря. Просимо щось з домашної кухні (картоплю, голубці, вареники, капусту, горох, гриби, т.д.) Можете ще принести не-алкогольні напитки. Бар буде продавати пиво і горілку.

Якщо хочете ворожати, будь ласка! Заохочуємо вас принести карти, свічки на ворожіння... та вдягнутись в народний/фокльорний/святочний одяг.

St. Demetrius Bazaar

Kosa has been busy meeting up and planning for the future winter season!On our list so far is the St Demetrius Bazaar taking place Friday November 27th- Saturday November 28th in the church basement. We will be there with a table and a whole lot of lovely treasures.  Christmas cards, jewellery and accessories, poetry and art, tea and baked treats... all sorts of things! check out our "what we make" page for photos of some of these goodies. See you there!

For all ya'll that don't know where that is: here is a lovely map courtesy of google: View Larger Map