Aleksey Apollonov
"Artist and Model"

31 march 2010 - 20 april 2010
Presentation - 31 march 2010, wednesday, 19.00

The most recent series of paintings of Aleksei Apollonov have a daunting simply title: "Artist and Model". At the same time, such a noble motive could create an impression that he was there forever. In fact, this is the brainchild of Modern times. According to Zola and Galsworthy, painters had some difficulties trying to practically implementation thereof in the late nineteenth century. Only in the last century, this theme blooms with unprecedented force... for several decades that followed by a wave of abstraction. Others are too well known, in order to repeat it.


In the work of our talented artist theme of "Artists and Models" occupies a special place. Simply to say, the first author’s approaches to this theme were made nearly 20 years ago, there appeared a graphic series, which the viewer had possibility to see in the Kiev Museum of Russian Art. Then he repeatedly returned to it: the motive was wandering, like his art series "Infant". And, finally, two dozen paintings presented to the public. So, what the result of the author's searches?


Starting from a scene plein air’s "landscape gardening", our author came to the virtuous variations of recognizable, too recognizable motif; note it to semi-abstract arabesque and to a dizzying level of abstraction. Half creative, half process of communication is presented as two equally enigmatic parts: whether painful struggle, or a mystic dance. Artist threaten with a brush to "unfathomable reality" of female body which escape from his understanding (and possession), fighting with her in anger. In fact, this is a continuation of the ancient motif where nymph is persecuted by faun. But here the nymph-model is not going to run away from the fawn-artist. The painter is also having the opportunity to curb the libidinous impulse with a help of art sublimation ...


From the formal point of view, we see here a kind of unfinished stained-glass window: the color are glow from "inside", dark contour frowns (desperate to cope with them, like the above character with his "victim"). The world of Apollonov is divided into colorful segments, not always match with boundaries of physical divisions. The theme "Artists and Models" become a cause for an elegant pattern for the symphony of explosive - and simplest - spots, turning to a colorful flag or germination of "Big Blue" from within the established form, melting of the loop - color. The hard fixed situation lead to cases when realistic beginning is aggravate in the separate canvases which had autonomy in the series. Here we have the right to assume the psychological nuances, such as apathy/aggression of heroine and response to her in hundredfold by the hero. And suddenly reveals that her skin has potato color and he had red pants.


But Apollonov retains the principle of contrast-struggles of two people throughout all his series. Just in the main, "semi-abstract" part he created a shade of irrationalism. Author does not hesitated spontaneously occurring angularity. He even developed this effect with a help of circuit pressure. Oh, how comfortable and easy would be lose in the elegance of recreation genre, burrow into female body seduction ... and drown in them. Needless to say, this has nothing to do with such author, as Aleksey Apollonov?

The theme of female nude (developed by art subject) one of the most popular motif in the painting of the twentieth century. Soon, however, becomes apparent that the artist was supposed to follow one of the ways: an escalation of the body or self-sufficiency of the grotesque, the temptation or schema. (Harmonic symbiosis like in Modigliani works very rare). Apollonov, of course, closed to second, modernist lines of artistic development. But the best examples of first line constantly looming before his eyes... and they are clearly glare on the surface of individual experiment.

Oleh Sydor-Gibelynda, art critic


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