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Monday, June 7, 2010

Novy Muzei (New Museum) - St. Petersburg

Inaugurated last Thursday, June 3rd, 2010 and located at 29, 6th Liniya of Vasilyevsky Island (Vasileostrovskaya subway station), the Novy Muzei is a celebration of the russian art with particular focus on the period from mid to late 20th century, in which the '50s and '60s were a prolific time in Russia, when new ideology was merging with existing academic realist styles.
The owner of the museum and its collection, Aslan Chekhoyev asserts that the Novy Muzei is the first of its kind in St. Petersburg (Russia) with a collection of Soviet informal and Russian modern art, showcasing Russia’s most prominent avant-garde artists.
With works from the Gazonevsky Movement and the New Artists art group, the Novy Muzei (new Museum) includes in its collection of informal art works by Dmitrii Krasnopevtsev, Leo Kropivnitsky, Lidiya Masterkova, Mikhail Shvartsman and Viktor Pivovarov, among others.
Rolled up and discarded in a corner in a run-down apartment block in Moscow, the painting "The Three Mannequins" by Boris Turetsky, now part of the collection was almost lost had not been found by the artist's descendents, who according to the museum's curator Sergei Popov, was largely regarded as one of the founders of the Russian contemporary art movement of the '60s, with works displayed at the Moscow's State Tretyakov Gallery.
The painting done in gouache featuring three outsized women dressed in bold Twiggy-like mini-dresses and haircuts to match, was acquired by Aslan Chekhoyev in 2008 for a considerable sum, who later spent over $10,0000 on it's museum-grade restoration.
In the same room of the the museum’s Sots-Art department hangs the work "Yalta Conference: the Judgment of Paris" (1985-86) by Vitaly Komar and Alexander Melamid, a surrealistically stylized piece depicting, in the guise of Greek mythology, Churchill, Roosevelt and Stalin as Greek goddesses and Hitler as the shepherd-prince Paris.
The three-metre-wide painting represents the conference that divided Europe during the second World War and was acquired at MacDougall's in London, November 2007, for £184,400.
Aslan Chekhoyev started collecting art after buying “Tyubiki” (1956), a large white canvas filled with a complex array of abstract symbols, by Yevgeny Mikhnov-Voitenko.
Since Soviet authorities bulldozed the open-air gallery in Moscow's Belyaevskaya Park in 1974, destroying non-conformist art, including works by Komar and Melamid, Russia has come a long way and recognizing the talent is the first step to raise the profile of Russian art worldwide.
The Novy Muzei plans to open an atelier and an art club for children, as well as to inlcude lectures and conferences in its programme.
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1 comment:

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