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20 January 2012

The Institute of Russian Realist Art Has Opened in Moscow

The Institute of Russian Realist Art (IRRA) started its activity in December, 2011.

The heart of the collection is presented by paintings of Soviet and Russian masters of ХХ-XXI centuries Sergey Gerasimov, Arkady Plastov, Alexander Deineka, Yuri Pimenov, Gely Korzhev, Victor Popkov, Nikolay Andronov, brothers Alexey and Sergey Tkachev, Victor Ivanov. The paintings exposed at IRRA offer a unique opportunity to get acquainted with important stages of the history of Soviet society.

The story of the founding collection which totals several thousands of Russian Realist paintings started almost ten years ago. Russian businessman Alexey Ananyev’s personal holdings served as a basis for it. Now IRRA’s collection is considered to be one of the best in the world. The first exposition of IRRA includes around 500 paintings.

Artists, whose paintings are presented in the collection, and fine art experts attended an informal opening of IRRA.

«The opening of the Institute of Russian Realist Art is the result of work which I personally conducted for almost ten years. Only five years ago there was an old factory building in this place. Now we have fully equipped museum premises with more than 4 000 square meters of exhibition areas, restoration workshop, lecture hall, storage room and fine art experts’ offices. The exposition you can see now is only the beginning . We assume and plan that serious art expertise will be held over the collection and we’ll be able to show and promote realism in painting and graphics, realism in its best sense», - Alexey Ananyev declared at the opening.

Well-known Russian fine art expert, corresponding member of Russian Academy of Arts and Ministry of Culture expert, Natalia Aleksandrova, who took part in preparation of the first exposition, also appeared at the opening.

«This is the first effort to present the post-WWII period of Russian Realism in such broad context, though the contents of the collection may seem controversial and uneven to my dear colleagues and artists themselves. In this context we represent artists of different generations. With the help of their works we can consider the situation in which this country in the second half of XX century existed. Russia is portrayed on all the canvases exhibited in this museum. Now, at the beginning of the XXI century we take new approach to our history, and we can at the same time re-evaluate it and gain it a new sight. This is a unique blend of artists that we represent here, at the Institute of Russian Realist Art. You won't see anything like this anywhere in the world», - Natalia Aleksandrova commented the opening of IRRA.

She was supported by an outstanding Russian fine art expert Vitaly Manin. «The museum’s collection was being formed for a long time, and Russian realism in its wide sense was taken as the main direction. And this is the advantage of this museum. The founding of IRRA is a phenomenon which should be encouraged and developed. Especially when the postmodernist camp aspires to win all the positions, moving aside traditional fine art. This museum will prove that fine art isn’t dying, it’s eternal, it goes on living and developing», - Vitaly Manin asserted.