254 is Maria Kulikovska's number as a registered refugee from the occupied Crimea since 2014.
«254. Collective action» is a reenactment of Maria Kulikovska's performance «254. Action» that was held during the opening of the biennale of contemporary art Manifesta'10 in Saint Petersburg, Russia, in July 2014. At that time, the artist was laying on the stairs of the museum in the wounded soldier position, covered by the Ukrainian flag. The performance ended with the short-term arrest of Maria Kulikovska, as a result of which the Ukrainian artist was added to the list of banned artists in Russia.
The war. The war's duration and consequences. The destructive inhumane nature of war. The war is one of the main issues of Maria Kulikovska's creativity. Inability to come back and to lead artistic activity in native Kerch town was plunged into the artist's skin, it made hundreds of scars. It still makes the senses of Kulikovska's identity bleed. The lack of "alive" place on the artist's body-memory became one of the reasons for the reaction and creation of the artistic actions and performative sculptures. For the artist, they are the method of react, fight, heal, exempt, identify, return.
«254» is a long-term art project of Maria Kulikovska, in which were created two sculptures-molds of the artist's body in the lying-down position. In 2018, the artist created a series of silkscreen prints on the basis of photographic documentation of the «254. Action».
«254. Collective action» took place on Boulevard de Charonne in Paris in 2014 through the support of Péril Jeune festival of political performance and Confluences cultural association in Paris. A few local residents and artists Sofiya Akimova, Christina Bouvier, Oleksii Markin, Ornic'Art, Anna Des, Natalia Tselyuba took part in the action.