Soviet Art

USSR Culture

Soviet Self-taught Artists All-Union exhibition

Fragment of painting 'To the memory of twenty million people' (died in WWII). Artist G.P. Sapozhnikov. 1975 Soviet Self-taught Artists All-Union exhibition

Fragment of painting ‘To the memory of twenty million people’ (died in WWII). Artist G.P. Sapozhnikov. 1975 Soviet Self-taught Artists All-Union exhibition

Soviet Self-taught Artists All-Union exhibition
First of all, this post is a tribute to the amateur artists of the USSR, and, in particular, those, whose works became a part of All-Union exhibition of 1977. By the way, the exhibition, titled “Self-taught Artists – to their Motherland” was a great success. According to a prominent Soviet artist D. Shmarinov, the exhibition was the self-portrait of the country. And those who sincerely love art, who had occasion to see the exhibition of amateur artists, still keep bright memories of them for a long time. Indeed, there is so much amazing truthfulness, integrity of perception, vital persuasiveness and at the same time, poetic freshness and spiritual health.
Especially rich in information about the life of the country were all-union expositions, representing the work of people’s talents from all the republics of the USSR.
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Soviet artist Igor Skorobogatov 1920-1997

Soviet artist Igor Skorobogatov

St. Bernard dog sleeps. Painting by Soviet artist Igor Skorobogatov

Soviet artist Igor Skorobogatov (10 June, 1920 – 1997) – animal painter, member of the Leningrad organization of the Union of Artists of the USSR. Honored Artist of the Russian Federation. Born in 1920 in Saratov into the family of a professional actor Konstantin Skorobogatov. Veteran of the Second World War (1941-1945), awarded with medals “For the defense of Leningrad”, “For victory over Germany”. During the Great Patriotic War he fought on the Leningrad front. Demobilized in 1945 in the rank of sergeant. And the same 1945 he entered the painting faculty of the Leningrad Repin Institute of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture of the Academy of Arts, from which he graduated in 1951. Skorobogatov studied in the workshops of prominent Soviet artists Isaak Brodsky and Professor Rudolf Frentz (1945-1951). His thesis work was the picture “On the collective farm” (1951). Already after the institute (1952), he began participating in exhibitions of Soviet art, together with the leading masters of fine arts of Leningrad.
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Soviet female singer Klavdiya Shulzhenko 1906-1984

Soviet female singer Klavdiya Shulzhenko (March 24, 1906 – June 17, 1984)

1930s. Soviet female singer Klavdiya Shulzhenko (March 24, 1906 – June 17, 1984)

Soviet female singer Klavdiya Shulzhenko (March 24, 1906 – June 17, 1984) – People’s Artist of the USSR (1971), laureate of the Order of Lenin (1976), Chevalier of the Order of the Red Star (1945), Awarded with the Medal “For the Defense of Leningrad”.
Born on March 24, 1906 in Kharkov, Shulzhenko dreamed of becoming an actress in a drama theater since childhood. This dream originated from her father, from whom she first heard Ukrainian folk songs. He was seriously interested in music: playing a wind instrument, and sometimes singing solos in concerts. His speeches, his beautiful chest baritone, led the daughter into indescribable delight …
In her youth, Klavdiya took part in amateur art activities. These performances went on the stage, made in the middle of the yard, and aroused great interest among the residents of the neighboring houses. They came to the show with their chairs, stools and benches. In each performance there were songs and dances, and Klavdiya always sang either during the play or in the concert. At that time, Shulzhenko planned to become a dramatic actress, and was not going to be a singer.
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Soviet photographer Vladimir Bogdanov

It's not my dog business. 1965. Soviet photographer Vladimir Bogdanov

It’s not my dog business. 1965. Soviet photographer Vladimir Bogdanov (born September 4, 1937, Leningrad, USSR)

Soviet photographer Vladimir Bogdanov
The author of this picture is one of the forefathers of the so-called street photography. He shot a simple life: in the Moscow courtyard, on the embankments of Leningrad, in the Summer Garden, in Minsk, Vologda and other places. Recognition and fame came to him with a photograph “It’s not my dog business.” At the international competition “Inter Press Photo” in 1966 he with this dog became a prize-winner of all spectator sympathies.
Born in 1937 in Leningrad, Vladimir Bogdanov didn’t plan to become a photographer. In 1955, being a student of the textile institute, he came to the photo club of the Palace of Culture of the Leningrad City Council. And ten years later he was already a professional photographer, having started working as a photographer in the youth newspaper “Smena” (1965). Then followed Leningradskaya Pravda, Komsomolskaya Pravda, Sovetskaya Rossiya, Trud and, finally, The Literary Newspaper, where he worked for 23 years.
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Soviet realist painter Akhmed Kitayev 1925-1996

Soviet realist painter Akhmed Kitayev 1925-1996

On guard of peace. 1975. Soviet realist painter Akhmed Kitayev 1925-1996

Soviet realist painter Akhmed Kitayev (15 February 1925 – 13 July 1996) – Member of the USSR Union of Artists.
Born in the village of Tatar Yunki, Mordovia, Akhmed Ibadullovich Kitayev grew up in the religious family (his grandfather was a mullah). When the boy was 5 years old, his family was exiled to Siberia (1930). Meanwhile, drawing accompanied the talented boy in grief and joy. Aged 10, Akhmed won the All-Union competition of young artists. And he decides on a brave act: he writes a letter to Stalin, in which he expresses a desire to learn to draw and asks him to help. A few weeks later, to the Siberian settlement where they lived, a military man appeared. He told Akhmed to get ready and put him on a train to Leningrad.
So, in the 1940-1945’s he studied at the Moscow Secondary Art School. And then, at the Moscow State Academic Art Institute of VI Surikov (1945-1950). After graduation from the institute he worked in Moscow. Starting exhibiting since 1950, he took part in All-Union art exhibitions of Soviet Art in Moscow (1950, 1955), and “Soviet Russia” (Moscow, 1960). He mostly specialized in genre paintings, and since the 1960s – in portraits. Besides, in the 1950-1952 he taught at the Moscow Secondary Art School.
Ahmed Ibadullovich died on July 13, 1996 (Moscow).
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Soviet photographer Vladimir Rufinovich Lagranzh

Babusya (old lady), 1961. Soviet photographer Vladimir Rufinovich Lagranzh

Babusya (old lady), 1961. Soviet photographer Vladimir Rufinovich Lagranzh

Soviet photographer Vladimir Rufinovich Lagranzh – a hereditary photographer, a Muscovite, and a recognized classic of Soviet and Russian photography. At the age of 20 he became a correspondent of the photo chronicles of TASS, and two years later makes such a sincere photo (Babusya, above). He is one of those photojournalists who not only did the editorial task, but tried to reflect in his works the era and the life of people in it. That is why among the photographs of Vladimir Lagranzh, in addition to unique images of politicians, artists and other famous people, there are so many everyday themes. And above all, they glorified the talented photographer. Noteworthy, the master receives recognition at his first international exhibition in Budapest and receives the Gold Medal for the photo “Little Ballerinas”.
Lagranzh is a participant of various competitions, exhibitions of Soviet photo, and a holder of professional awards, medals, prizes and diplomas. In particular, the highest award of the professional guild of photographers and the Union of Journalists “Golden Eye of Russia”. Besides, he is the author of the textbook “Pigeons over the Kremlin”.
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Soviet Latvian photographer Vilgelm Mikhailovsky

Crossing. 1975. Humanus series. Soviet Latvian photographer Vilgelm Mikhailovsky

Crossing. 1975. Humanus series. Soviet Latvian photographer Vilgelm Mikhailovsky

Soviet Latvian photographer Vilgelm Mikhailovsky (Vilhelms Mihailovskis) was Laureate of the State Prize of the Latvian Soviet Socialist Republic (1989). Noteworthy, he was the first of Soviet photographers received the honorary title of an outstanding artist of the International Federation of Photographic Art (Excellence FIAP, 1979). Meanwhile, he has more than a hundred different international awards. His author’s collections are in the French Museum of Photography (Musee Francais de la Photographie), the Musee de L’Elysee in Lausanne and in other European collections.
Born October 2, 1942 in the city of Konstantinovka, Donetsk region, Mikhailovsky graduated from the Konstantinovka Technical Institute (1966). Then he moved to Latvia. He started photography in 1969, and began working as a photographer in the magazine “Māksla” (1976-1996), the newspaper “Literatūra un māksla” (1980-1982), and as an art editor in the Baltic Newspaper (1991-1995).
Mikhailovsky became known for his series “Portraits” (1985), “Invitation to the Execution” (1988), and “Non-stop Photography” (1996-2003). He is the author of many photo albums, including: “Revelation” (1982), “Tribute to Riga” (1992), “The Face of the Epoch” (1998) “Flight 2000” (2000) “Centuries Look at Us” (2002).
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