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31 August 2018

Nissky. Horizon

Nissky. Horizon

September 14, 2018 – January 27, 2019, the Institute of Russian Realist Art, Moscow

Nissky. Horizon

This retrospective exhibition at the Institute of Russian Realist Art will be a major project dedicated to Georgy Nissky. The artist, who won renown in the 1950s-1960s, is now again gaining recognition. His work “Above the snows”, acquired by IRRA, set a new record for Soviet Realist painting.

“We’ve already put on several personal exhibitions by various artists, but this exhibition dedicated to Georgy Nissky, will no doubt be the most comprehensive in terms of the depth with which his work and archives are being studied. We’re bringing in works from 25 museums. In October-November, we’ll be presenting a major catalogue where images and documents from over 50 museums, archives and private collections will be collected,” says the founder of the Institute of Russian Realist Art, Alexei Ananyev.

The instantly recognizable works of Georgy Nissky capture the way of life of their author – an athlete, a seawolf and a rebel. Inexhaustible and energetic, he created canvases charged with speed, with the bands of railway lines and highways cleaving through the classic Russian landscape. His trademark approach employs an unusually low horizon, imbuing Nissky’s compositions with a limitless space that is free for the movement of trains, planes and ships.

The exhibition will not only introduce spectators to the artist’s finest works, it will also detail the development of Nissky’s style with the aid of masterpieces by his idols. Another section in the exhibition will be devoted to the artist’s followers. “We’re not just going to show Nissky’s works. We’ll be turning to those who inspired and taught him – Arkady Rylov, Pyotr Konchalovsky, Nicholas Roerich, Aleksandr Deyneka, Albert Marquet – as well the people that Nissky himself influenced in one way or another,” Nadezhda Stepanova, IRRA’s artistic director and the curator of the exhibition, comments on the exhibition’s composition.

The exhibition will feature works from the collections of the State Tretyakov Gallery, the State Russian Museum, the Dogadin Astrakhan State Picture Gallery, the Mashkov Volgograd Visual Arts Museum, the Vologda Oblast Picture Gallery, the Kramsky Voronezh Oblast Arts Museum, the Vasnetsovykh Vyatsky Arts Museum, the Gomel Palace and Park Ensemble, the State Vladimir-Suzdal History, Architecture and Arts Museum-Reserve, the Dal State History of Russian Literature Museum, the Yekaterinburg Visual Arts Museum, the Kostroma History, Architecture and Arts Museum-Reserve, the Deyneka Kursk State Picture Gallery, the Nizhny Novgorod State Arts Museum, the Novgorod State Unified Museum-Reserve, the Novosbirsk State Arts Museum, the Perm State Arts Gallery, the Sochi Arts Museum, the Tambov Oblast Picture Gallery, the Tver Oblast Picture Gallery, the Tula Oblast Arts Museum, the Goncharov Ulyanovsk Oblast Local History Museum, the Yaroslavl Arts Museum and private collections.

The exhibition will include a large quantity of documentary materials. Almost all of them will be presented for the first time, even to specialists in the field.

The development of the architecture and design of the exhibition will be carried out by architects of the PROJECT ELEVEN architectural bureau, Igor Chirkin and Pavel Prishin, who created the architecture for the permanent exhibition at IRRA, as well as numerous temporary exhibitions: Soviet Sport, Russia on the Move. Planes, Trains and Automobiles, BENVENUTI – WELCOME. Diary of a Journey by Anatoly Kokorin, Alexander Labas. October, Come Home, To the Edge of Color, A Window to Russia. Masterpieces of Seven Generations, and others. Andrei Shelyutto and Irina Chekmaryova will be coauthors of the architectural design and the designers of the posters, the graphic design and the catalogue of the exhibition. An audioguide and extensive educational program will be prepared for the exhibition.

The publication of a major catalogue will coincide with the opening of the project – it will comprise an unprecedented study of the work of Georgy Nissky with the fullest possible listing of the works created by the artist. The book will be presented in the autumn of 2018.

The opening of the exhibition will take place on September 14. Entry to IRRA on that day will be free. The cost of a full entry tricket to the exhibition on all other days will be 300 rubles.

Georgy Grigoryevich Nissky

January 8 (21), 1903 — June 18, 1987

“I was born in Belarus and spent my childhood there, in a little place called Novobelitsa, among pine forests, two rivers and a big lake.” It is with these words that Georgy Nissky modestly begins his autobiography, the life of a painting academician, a winner of a state prize, a Moscow sailing champion and the beloved Soviet artist of the French classic Albert Marquet, as well as a rebel, a traveler and an incorrigible romantic. In the first words of his autobiography we can already see the artist’s characteristic style – laconic and fast-paced. Nissky began his journey by drawing steam engines in the margins of the medical books of his father, a doctor’s assistant at a railway station. Moving to Moscow, Nissky enrolled on the painting factulty at the Higher Arts and Technical Studios. Far more photographs than paintings have survived from Nissky’s period of study. The artist worked in the studios of Alexander Drevin and Robert Falk, posed for Pyotr Konchalovsky, and spent all of his free (and non-free) time either in the sports halls of the Higher Arts and Technical Studios, or on their roofs, stunning his classmates by doing handstands on the edge of this six-story building. Having met the boxer and painter Aleksandr Deyneka, Nissky was inspired by the art of the Society of Easel Painters. His diploma work, “The International on Gilles-Barthe”, painted in the spirit of the Society of Easel Painters, was acquired by the Tretyakov Gallery, and Nissky himself quickly attained the status of the main sea-scape painter of the 1930s. His passion for sailing made this possible – the artist even had his own yacht. Back on land, Nissky painted the belts of modern highways and railway lines, and in the war years he created a series of landscapes during travels to the front line at Yukhnov together with Aleksandr Deyneka and Yuri Pimenov. During the first decades after the Second World War, Nissky developed his distinct style that was in synch with the era of great changes. The geography of his works during this period was broader than ever before – the artist often locked up his studio on Vekhnaya Maslovka, got behind the wheel of his Volga car, and drove over the horizon in search of new subjects. A generous and goodhearted man, he gave support to artists who were starting out and was always surrounded by friends. He didn’t have any direct students, but his laconic landscapes have influenced generations of artists.

For inquiries about accreditation to the opening, interviews and provision of commentary:

Ksenia Marennikova

+7(903) 5283611

Bedush & Marennikova PR-Agency


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