Soviet Art

USSR Culture

Soviet political cartoonist Boris Yefimov

Against cold war. Let ice be this kind between us. Soviet political cartoonist Boris Yefimov (28 September 1900 - October 1, 2008)

Against cold war. Let ice be this kind between us. Soviet political cartoonist Boris Yefimov (28 September 1900 – October 1, 2008)

Soviet political cartoonist Boris Yefimov (28 September 1900 – October 1, 2008) – People’s Artist of the USSR (1967), Hero of Socialist Labor (1990), laureate of the State Prize (1950, 1951). Boris Yefimov was always an interesting personality. World-renowned cartoonist, who was friends with Mayakovsky and Trotsky, saw Nicholas II, had talks with Stalin, and was Hitler’s personal enemy. Boris Yefimov, having all imaginable awards and titles, created during his long life (108 years), more than 40 thousand cartoons. Along with Deni, D.S.Moor, L.G.Brodaty, MM Cheremnykh, and Kukryniksy he has created a unique phenomenon in world culture – “positive satire”. September 28, 2007, on his 107th birthday, he was appointed chief artist of the newspaper “Izvestia”, and at the age of 107 continued work. He wrote his memoirs and drew caricatures, took an active part in public life, speaking at all sorts of memorabilia and commemorative meetings, parties and other events. Boris Efimov died on October 1st, 2008 in Moscow at the 109-year of life and was buried in the Novodevichy cemetery columbarium.
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Soviet sculptor Nikita-Gleb Lavinsky

Vladimir Mayakovsky, sculpture by Soviet sculptor Nikita-Gleb Lavinsky

Vladimir Mayakovsky by Soviet sculptor Nikita-Gleb Lavinsky (August 12, 1921 – June 14, 1986)

Soviet sculptor Nikita-Gleb Lavinsky (August 12, 1921 – June 14, 1986) is the author of monuments and busts, installed in different cities of the former USSR. His most famous work is the second monument to Ivan Susanin in Kostroma. Honored Artist of the RSFSR, Commander of the Order “Badge of Honor”. According to testimony and materials released in the TV documentary on the First Channel “Odd Man Out” (2013), his father was the prominent Soviet poet Vladimir Mayakovsky. The fact that the biological father of Nikita-Gleb is Vladimir Mayakovsky, who was acquainted with a married Elizaveta (Lily) in 1920 during their joint work in the satire magazine “Windows of ROSTA”. The documentary film “Odd Man Out”, which premiered at the First channel to the 120th anniversary of the poet’s birthday, 20 July, 2013 revealed that fact. In the film, Elizaveta, the daughter of Lavinskaya, confirms the fact, relying on documents and photographs of the family archive, evidence of her late father, who left memories of visits of Mayakovsky to their family and his relationship with her mother.
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Soviet realist painter Nikolai Romadin

Soviet realist painter Nikolai Romadin. Mother. 1934. Private collection

Mother. 1934. Private collection. Soviet realist painter Nikolai Romadin (1903—1987)

Soviet realist painter Nikolai Romadin (1903—1987) – Academician of the USSR Academy of Arts (1967, Corresponding Member – 1953), People’s Artist of the USSR (1971), the winner of the Lenin Prize (1980), second-degree Stalin Prize (1946) and the RSFSR State Prize of Repin (1970). Nikolai Mikhailovich Romadin was born in Samara into the family of a railroad worker Mikhail Andreyevich Romadin. The artist’s father was a soldier in the First World War, he served in the the railway, drove trains. After the collapse of the railway had to work as a simple oiler, was wounded, returned to Samara. After his recovery, he went to work at the depot. Nikolai had to work from the age of eleven, he became a newspaper boy. To successfully sell newspapers, everywhere he had to be the first, to run faster than others along the street to the train station and the pier with a heavy canvas bag, shouting loudly newspaper titles: Volzhsky day! Volga word! To the pier arrived wheel passenger steamers. Leaving them for a short walk, passengers willingly read the local newspapers.
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Soviet artist Fyodor Vasilyevich Shapayev

Rural postman 1959. Voronezh Regional Art Museum named after IN Kramskoi. Soviet artist Fyodor Vasilyevich Shapayev

Rural postman 1959. Voronezh Regional Art Museum named after IN Kramskoi. Soviet artist Fyodor Vasilyevich Shapayev (b. April 16, 1927)

Soviet artist Fyodor Vasilyevich Shapayev
Born April 16, 1927 in the village with an amazing name – Pokoi (Peace), Fyodor Vasilyevich Shapayev is a famous Soviet artist. His creativity has a high aesthetic value, and great ethical significance. With all his paintings, with all the force of sincerity and talent inherent in the master, the artist claims such unchanging, fundamental values ​​without which there can be no man – kindness, sacrifice, hard work, mental fortitude, faith, love. In a broad sense, creativity of Honored Artist of the RSFSR (1980), member of the USSR Union of Artists Fyodor Shapayev associated with the humanistic concept of realistic art, originating in the Renaissance.
Fyodor Shapayev comes from farmers of Serdobsk County of Saratov Province. “None of the relatives was linked to art, they were farmers. I do not remember my grandparents, but my parents told that he was a priest,” – says the artist. He was born April 16, 1927 in the village with an amazing name – Pokoi (Peace). Later, after becoming a famous artist, Fyodor captured the image of his native village and the parents on the canvas. In the portrait of his mother, painted in 1964, maternal life, full of daily long-term work, conceptualized as a moral achievement. The artist managed to express a deep, penetrating understanding of the mother’s life as a selfless service to the family, children. Like some other portraits of people close to the artist (his father, wife, daughter, son), Portrait of a mother has a distinctly intimate character.
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Soviet Latvian actress Vija Artmane 1929-2008

Soviet Latvian actress Vija Artmane (1929-2008)

Soviet Latvian actress Vija Artmane (August 21, 1929 – October 11, 2008)

Soviet Latvian actress Vija Artmane has become the real star of the All-Union scale after the film “Native Blood” in which she starred with Evgeny Matveyev. This melodrama has been a favorite film of all the peoples of the USSR. The main character played by Artmane – Sonya, the mother of several children – feminine, sincere, reliable and beautiful. Rumors of a romance between Artmane and her partner Evgeny Matveyev spread throughout the Soviet Union after the release of the film – so sincerely they played love. Rumors immediately “married” them, although Matveyev at that time had a strong family. Soon Artmane gave birth to a daughter, Christiana. In his interview to Komsomolskaya Pravda (21.08.2009) the son of the actress said: “Before she died, my mother confessed that the father of my sister Christiana – Evgeny Matveyev.” Before dying, she accepted Orthodoxy, changed her name Vija to Elizaveta. In her own words, Artmane painfully experienced the gap between Latvia and Russia. After the collapse of the USSR Via Artmane was persecuted in nationalist Latvia. “Latvia is small for me, I do not have enough space, I’m not used to live so narrowly. From communicating with Russians I have changed. Russians have an open soul, a unique perception of the person. Latvians are others. Russians are very close to me, a few years ago, I even accepted Orthodoxy”.
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Soviet painter Andrei Gorsky 1926-2015

Female portrait. 1954. The State Tretyakov Gallery. Soviet painter Andrei Gorsky (17 April 1926 - 22 September 2015)

Female portrait. 1954. The State Tretyakov Gallery. Soviet painter Andrei Gorsky (17 April 1926 – 22 September 2015)

Soviet painter Andrei Gorsky (17 April 1926 – 22 September 2015) – member of the USSR Union of artists (1956), Honored Artist of the RSFSR (1982), People’s Artist of the Russian Federation (1996). Andrei Gorsky belongs to the national culture, which determines all his work during the difficult and dangerous for the existence of the Soviet state war and post-war years. Then was laid a solid foundation of his art. The young years of the artist passed in the time of the Great Patriotic War, full of anxiety, both for the fate of each individual soldier, and for the fate of the entire country. And in the soul of a sensitive man, an intellectual grew a sense of patriotism, interest to the history, and love for the motherland. The nature of the Russian North, its courageous people and the historical past of our country, the roots of its culture attracted the artist. Russian history, native environment, the Soviet people, defending the right to live with our heads held high – that unified in its diversity the theme of the artist.
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Soviet artist Boris Mikhailovich Nemensky

Mother. 1945. The State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow. Soviet artist Boris Mikhailovich Nemensky

Mother. 1945. The State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow. Soviet artist Boris Mikhailovich Nemensky (b. 1922)

Paintings by Soviet artist Boris Mikhailovich Nemensky (b. 1922) many times became a phenomenon, of not only artistic, but also social life, the subject of a very heated debate. Faith in humanity, in its beauty and indestructibility, the artist’s belief in the power of the human principle, to be fought not only among inhuman trials of war, but today – this is perhaps the most important characteristic of his work. “B. Nemensky has already become a classic at twenty-two years old when he created his famous picture “Mother”, – said the famous Soviet poet Konstantin Simonov. Boris Nemensky is known as a painter of easel painting with complex and dramatic content, and at the same time as very lyrical artist with a bright and vibrant view of the world. As an academician, a member of the Academy of Education and the Academy of Arts of the USSR and Russia, People’s Artist of the RSFSR, laureate of Stalin and State prizes, he remains the same, not going to compromise, original master.
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