Fear and Loathing in Ukraine
By Phil Strongman
Ukraine: an ancient nation whose recent revival began with a Facebook post that sparked a revolution, a country undergoing an arts renaissance in the middle of a war, and at its heart, Kyiv, aka Kiev. A metropolis of galleries, studios, clubs and bars, a city of fake assassinations that’s safer than London, a capital where streets are eight lanes wide and yet where locals still drive on the pavement, a cultural centre with artists who often refuse to sell their art… It is, to say the least, a dazzling paradox, a city uniquely caught between East and West, a growing bubble of creativity that’s right on the frontline of the new Cold War.
Acclaimed author and film-maker Phil Strongman first arrived in Ukraine in 2016, leading a small crew of ‘party animals’ for a three week drama shoot. But weeks became months and the end result is a beguiling, breathless book which is also a feature length documentary. A gonzo journo expose of a whole ‘new’ world? A D-I-Y movie guide? A cultural/political tome? A quality travel book? FEAR AND LOATHING IN UKRAINE is all this and more, a unique mix for a unique country – and a unique time and place.
With Ukraine’s intrigues now close to impeaching an American President, Strongman’s story is as topical as it is fascinating: a moving, shocking – and, at times, hilarious – true tale of film, art, love, war, revolution… and cats.
Phil Strongman’s previous books include John Lennon: Life, Times & Assassination, Cocaine, Pretty Vacant: A History of Punk and Metal Box: Stories of John Lydon & PiL. He also co-authored Classic Albums, White Lines and A Century of Jazz.
Phil’s feature length documentary film Anarchy! McLaren Westwood Gang was broadcast on Sky Arts in 2017.