An Old Russian Romance sung by Dmitri Khvorostovsky with the Moscow Chamber Orchestra under Constantine Obelian. The Russian folk instruments are played by the Style of Five. The artwork in the background is by the Impressionist Isaak Brodsky.
Monday, 19 November 2007
The Swimmer (1976, Valery Balabanov)
The Cathedral of Christ the Saviour was dynamited by the Soviets in 1934 (the plunger was depressed by Lazar Kaganovich). As this work is discussed by the artist in detail in “A Prayer for Russia”, I shall not belabour the point here. The communists intended to build a gigantic skyscraper-tower “Palace of Soviets” on the site, but, the ground was found unsuitable for such a project. It was to be topped with a statue of Lenin larger than the Statue of Liberty! For some 45 years, an open-air swimming pool was on the site. Ergo, “The Swimmer”. The water was heated, so, it was possible to swim in this pool in the depths of a Moscow winter. Interestingly, the steam rising from the pool was damaging the paintings in a nearby museum (the problem was solved by the replacement of the pool by the church!).
With the fall of the Soviets in 1991, many people demanded that the Cathedral be rebuilt on the original site. During the early 1990s, the church was rebuilt entirely to the old design, but with the use of modern materials and construction techniques, it was done in a fraction of the time of the original building. Even the iconography was done exactly on the pattern of the demolished edifice.
In short, the mute plea uttered by the subject of this painting in the late 1970s became a reality in the 1990s. This painting is now in the collection of the Cathedral of Christ the Saviour in Moscow. Rather fitting, no?
Yevgeny Burmashkin was born in 1951 in Moscow. He is a member of the Creative Union of Artists of Russia and the International Federation of Artists. Yevgeny Burmashkin paints “mood landscapes” in the style of Isaak Levitan. He has taken part in the following exhibitions:
2000 – exhibition ‘All Colours’, The Central House of Artists, Moscow;
2000 – exhibition ‘Christmas Fair’, The Central House of Artists, Moscow;
2001 – International Art Salon, The Central House of Artists, Moscow;
2001 – international exhibition in the Art-Manege, Moscow;
2001 – exhibition ‘Names at Art’, Moscow;
2001 – 2nd International art festival, Magdeburg, Germany;
2001 – exhibition ‘Moskovia-Normandia’, Portbay, Volonj, France;
2002 – International Art Salon, the Central House of Artists, Moscow;
2002 – personal exhibition in Cherbourg, France;
2003 – exhibition in GAZPROM, Moscow;
2004 – exhibition in The Union of Federation, Moscow;
2005 – exhibition in The City Hall of Moscow;
2006 – exhibition in Malazia;
2007 – exhibition in Malta;
2007 – exhibition in Morocco.
I apologise for not posting this earlier whilst I was showcasing Mr Badakva’s art. From this point on, if I can get any information or a photo of an artist/musician, I shall post it so we can learn about the creators of the art posted here.
We do not have much on Mr Badakva. He was born in 1941, and has been a member of the Union of Artists of Russia since 2001. His paintings are in private collections and museums in Canada, Germany, China, the USA, Russia, and other countries. Valery Badakva is a neo-Impressionist. Nevertheless, his photo reveals him to be a stereotypical “artist”, even down to the beret!