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An exhibition at the John Martin Gallery

21st October 2003

A new exhibition from a Russian artist living in Scotland.
With best wishes

The John Martin Gallery will be holding an exhibition of new work by Gennadii Gogoliuk from the 22nd October until the 8th November.
Gogoliuk was born in Sholokhov, Rostov Oblast in 1960. He studied at the Lugansk art school in the Ukraine and at the St Petersburg Academy of Art, after which he worked for several years with the Kirov Theatre (now the Mariinski Theatre) in St Petersburg. His work has been exhibited in Finland, Denmark, and Germany as well as a joint exhibition at the Russian Museum, St Petersburg (1995). Now living in Scotland, he has exhibited at the Royal Scottish Academy and with the Society of Scottish Artists, winning the Maud Gemmell Hutchinson Prize at the Royal Scottish Academy in 2000. This is the artist’s second exhibition with the John Martin Gallery.

‘Eight years ago, I began to notice a strange feature in the work of artist friends from the Volga region of Russia – not only those representing the national minorities, but Russian artists, too. These artists, all of whom were acquainted with the various “post-isms” of the flagging modern art of the last millennium were beginning, with growing insistency, to return to the life surrounding them – to the native streets and alleys of their own towns, to native, familiar, human faces and figures and to their native soil – to a concrete, rather than a symbolic, native land.

In a poem written in 1996 I spoke of this tendency towards domestication, making intimate of the painted human environment.

This art I, joking, call it ‘intimism’ – it sounds bad, but many historical -isms sound no better.

I was reminded of this when I became acquainted with the delicate and powerful work of Gennadii Gogoliuk. What had appeared to me then, dimly, as a veiled hint, is here made manifest with technical sophistication but, for all that, with a clear purity of heart, devoted to simple things. In my opinion, Gennadii Gogoliuk could be termed an outstanding ‘intimist’ now entering the arena of European art.

Be that as it may, I see his work, which creates the “eternally-simple simplicity of the world-as-miracle” (again, I am quoting myself) as yet another example of the new return to reality which, precisely because it is new, possesses elements of fairytale and theatricality.’

Gennady Aygi
12 June 2003, Moscow

John Martin Gallery
38 Albemarle Street
T: 020 7499 1314
F: 020 7493 2842
Monday-Friday 10 – 6
Saturday 10 – 2

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