Soviet Art

USSR Culture

Soviet Georgian artist Elena Akhvlediani 1901-1975

Cold day. 1960. Oil on canvas. Painting by Soviet Georgian artist Elena Akhvlediani (1901-1975)

Cold day (fragment). 1960. Oil on canvas. Painting by Soviet Georgian artist Elena Akhvlediani (1901-1975)

Soviet Georgian artist Elena Akhvlediani

There are masters who impress us with their constancy, fidelity once and for the whole life. This is Elena Akhvlediani – People’s Artist of the Georgian SSR (1960). Her love is Georgia, but the main thing that the artist devotes her work to is the beauty of Tbilisi, not subject to the action of time and history, an eternally blossoming and young city. With what indefatigable perseverance Akhvlediani again and again repeats her favorite composition – sticking on the slope of the mountain and as if hanging over each other’s houses! Of course, this does not exhaust the plot of her paintings.

Akhvlediani portrays Georgian village (Imereti, 1968), mountain landscapes (“Cold Day”, 1960), genre scenes (“Alazani Valley”, 1954), traditional for Georgian painting scenes of old spree, taking place directly on nature, with toasts, songs, and dances. The invariance of the theme helps the artist from year to year to improve her skills, find new artistic solutions. Despite some influence of primitivism (especially in the early years of creativity), her painting is classical. This definition applies equally to the external formal side, and to the inner purity and harmony of the sensations, feelings and thoughts that bring us the art of Elena Akhvlediani. No wonder in her youth she was fond of the Renaissance and traveled through Italy and France. The classics of Akhvlediani got a sense of proportionality, harmony in the picture, an in-depth, philosophical-lyrical understanding of nature.
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Soviet Azerbaijan artist Togrul Narimanbekov 1930-2013

Soviet Azerbaijan artist Togrul Narimanbekov (August 7, 1930, Baku - June 2, 2013, Paris)

Festival. 1980. Oil on canvas. Painting by Soviet Azerbaijan artist Togrul Narimanbekov (August 7, 1930, Baku – June 2, 2013, Paris)

Works by the Soviet Azerbaijan artist Togrul Narimanbekov attracts us with a special sharpness, saturation, strength of color, and energy. Watching his pictures, we plunge into the tense world of emotional experiences, inner clashes, drama, into a world of full-blooded joy, temperament, a world of courage and fortitude. Cheerful and sad, pensive and happy, dancing and singing – Azerbaijan has found its reflection in the paintings of Narimanbekov.
Painting “Festival” (1980) – decorative and festive, built on the intense color rhythm, which comes back to the national traditions of Azerbaijani art.
Member of the Union of Artists of the USSR (1955), People’s Artist of Azerbaijan (1967) and People’s Artist of the USSR (1989), Narimanbekov lived and worked in Baku and Paris. He worked in the style of abstractionism and figurativism. First, he got his art education at the Azerbaijan Art School named after Azim Azimzade. Then, from 1950 to 1955 – at the Lithuanian Art Institute in Vilnius. Permanent participant of art exhibitions since 1952, his personal exhibitions took place in Baku (1961, 1965 and 1975), Moscow (1967 and 1972), Vilnius (1972), Volgograd (1973), and in Lvov (1975). In addition, he presented his paintings abroad – Prague (1965), Wroclaw, Warsaw and Sopot (1973).
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Soviet landscape painter Sulo Yuntunen 1915-1980

The village of Gridino. 1972. Soviet landscape painter Sulo Yuntunen 1915-1980

The village of Gridino. 1972. Soviet landscape painter Sulo Yuntunen 1915-1980

Soviet landscape painter Sulo Yuntunen
Rightly considered the pioneer of the modern Karelian landscape, Sulo Yuntunen managed to look at the nature of Karelia through the eyes of our contemporary, to plastically comprehend it in a new way. According to the artist, it is not enough to admire nature. This will inevitably lead to copying. You will work “under Levitan” or “under Van Gogh.” In order to show life in its own way, one must learn to think.”
Member of the USSR Union of artists (1946)
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Soviet Ukrainian artist Vladimir Patyk 1929-1916

Peasant woman from Rusov. 1971. Oil on canvas. Soviet Ukrainian artist Vladimir Patyk

Peasant woman from Rusov. 1971. Oil on canvas. Soviet Ukrainian artist Vladimir Patyk (October 9, 1929 – August 28, 2016)

Soviet Ukrainian artist Vladimir Patyk (October 9, 1929 – August 28, 2016) – landscape painter, still-life master, one of the greatest artists in Ukrainian painting of the second half of the twentieth century. People’s Artist of Ukraine, Vladimir Iosifovich Patik was born in the village of Cherny Ostrov, Lvov region. He studied at the Lvov Institute of Applied and Decorative Arts (1947-1953). The first participation in the regional art exhibition took place in his native Lvov in 1954. And after 4 years, he became a member of the Union of Artists of the USSR. Then followed the republican exhibitions “Soviet Ukraine” (1960, 1961). In addition, in 1968 he participated in the group exhibition of Soviet art in Moscow (1968). Meanwhile, his first foreign exhibition took place in 1969 in Poland. The artist also participated in an exhibition dedicated to the centenary of the birth of Lenin in Moscow (1970) and the 50th anniversary of the formation of the USSR in 1972.
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Soviet Russian artist Natalia Nesterova

Soviet Russian artist Natalia Nesterova

Carousel. 1975. Painting by Soviet Russian artist Natalia Nesterova (born 1944, Moscow)

Soviet Russian artist Natalia Nesterova
The work of young Soviet artists of the 1970s unfolded a wide panorama of directions and styles before the viewer. And a significant place in it belongs to works that open us in a special festive world, seen as if by the eyes of a child or a “naive” non-professional painter. Mastering and creative rethinking of fine folklore, which is the basis of this trend and in essence is a continuation of the national traditions of the national picture, lubok, handicrafts, united many young masters. To the same pleiade of painters belongs the Moscow artist Natalia Nesterova.
Born in 1944 in Moscow, Natalia Nesterova graduated from the Moscow State Art Institute named after Surikov (1968). In 1969 she became a member of the USSR Union of Artists.
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Soviet Russian artist Ksenia Nechitailo

Soviet Russian artist Ksenia Nechitailo

Letter. 1967. Oil, canvas. Painting by Soviet Russian artist Ksenia Nechitailo (born 1942)

Soviet Russian artist Ksenia Nechitailo

Born in 1942, Ksenia Nechitailo graduated from the State Art Institute named after V.I. Surikov of the USSR Academy of Arts, with honors. Member of the USSR Union of Artists since 1969, her paintings are in the State Tretyakov Gallery, the State Russian Museum, the art galleries of Orenburg, Vologda, Perm, Krasnoyarsk and other cities.
In one of her first paintings “Letter” (1967) the artist most frankly “expressed” her fascination with Russian art of the early twentieth century. An uncomplicated plot, a rough deformation of a a woman’s figure reading letter, ridiculous, at first glance, combinations of colors – all this resembles the “folk-tray style” of neo-primitivistic portraits. In such a frank demonstration of the beloved aesthetic prototypes, we see a kind of challenge to the modern pictorial school, and the artist’s right to be fascinated with the style of the past.
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Soviet Latvian sculptor Teodor Zalkaln 1876-1972

Soviet Latvian sculptor Teodor Zalkaln 1876-1972

Soviet Latvian sculptor Teodor Zalkaln 1876-1972

The art of Soviet Latvian sculptor Teodor Zalkaln, Hero of Socialist Labor, member of the Academy of Arts of the USSR, People’s Artist of the USSR, belongs to the bright pages of Latvian culture, its truly national values. In one of his speeches the artist said: “I am a sculptor, I have subordinated all my life to the tasks of a sculptor, this was my joy, and the reason for my worries.” As a sculptor I looked at life as an artist trying to understand and convey in my images our Latvian life, in which I see the essence of our people.”
The search for a monumental image, the desire to embody the beauty, strength and integrity of the national character were the basis of the work of Teodor Eduardovich Zalkaln. The images of his mother, who had borne the calamities of the First World War, the monuments built according to the plan of monumental propaganda, and the majestic portraits show that the artist has always understood the life, hopes and aspirations of the people.
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