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Awards: National Artist of Ukraine

Known for: art of textiles,  exhibitions, fashion (Art-Director of fashion houses in Lviv, Kharkiv, Kyiv)


His art pieces are in museums and private collections in Ukraine: Kyiv, Lviv, Truskavets, Kaniv, Kolomyia, Drohobych; abroad: USA, Canada, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Poland, Romania, Bulgaria, Mongolia, India.


I was brought here by my respect for this artist, whose exhibitions are a great event in the spiritual life of Kyiv and Lviv, and by my respect for the artist who can legitimately be called a National Artist. His exhibition shows that he has developed and deepened his art, informed by the joys of life; he has accomplished a real feat. All tapestries, covers, appliqués, dolls, clothes displayed here were not only designed, but also made made by his own hands. We must celebrate his hard work as much as we bow to his enduring talent.
Mykhailo Bilas does not allow self-repetition, he always strives for novelty, yet remaining in a certain defined style. The Lord shows us the same rainbow as if he lacked the gift to diversify in some way his majestic creation. Mykhailo Bilas is all about diversity. He is permanently changing the range of colours, shapes and genres of his work, but he always strikes us like the rainbow, he is like a god who loves above all the optimistic mood of the sky, with a clean slate after the storm. He is constant in this.
We live in a time when the folk-style became the property of variety shows, folk ensembles, choirs and dancers only. Everything that was in the chests of our grandparents, their coral necklaces, ribbons, shirts, gowns either were taken by movie speculators, snobs that are proud of collecting old objects, or it passed into museums, or dispersed eaten by moth in coffers and cupboards. This can also be said about all the covers, tapestries and clothes, which also became museum exhibits at best.
In our superficial times with its repetitive architecture and unchanging clothes, Mykhailo Bilas is a great transformer of folk art energy into new forms, new art objects, and at that he comes to create particularly those things that every person wants to have live with at home. Mykhailo Bilas is a musician of colours; no one feels the harmony of colours like he does, no one can think of the beauty of clothes, the beauty of an interior like him! Our national spirit is represented in each of his works, an individual distinctive character is combined with age-old traditions. Mykhailo Bilas is the pride of modern Ukrainian culture.
I am convinced that this exhibition will be enthusiastically welcomed in the different cities of Ukraine, it can bring and will bring fame not only to the artist, but also to the people who, in reality, show their original nature in such creations. Wearing such things one can boldly enter onto international stages – not for gaining standing ovations, but for the joy of communication with other peoples. Mykhailo Bilas's purpose seems to be to show the marvelousness of a new life for old objects and traditional folk skills, and in doing so he affirms our national reality, our optimistic world view.

Dmytro Pavlychko,
Ukrainian poet, translator, literary critic,
social and political figure, Hero of Ukraine