Dear visitors! For technical reasons, meeting with the organizers of the «Weeks of Conscience» postponed to  indefinite period. We apologize.

Russian vision on Europe
Alexander Slusarev, Valery Sirovsky, Igor Moukhin, Vladimir Mishukov, George Pervov, Natalia Pavlovskaya, Lev Melikhov, Vladimir Grevi, Grigoriy Yaroshenko, Tim Parchikov

Lev Melikhov.
Rome.
2005.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Grigory Yaroshenko.
Rome.
2005. 
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Lev Melikhov.
Rome.
2005.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Vladimir Mishukov.
Paris.
2004.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Vladimir Mishukov.
Paris.
2004.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum George Pervov.
Paris.
2004.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum George Pervov.
Paris.
2004.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Igor Mukhin.
From “Paris” series Igor Mukhin.
From “Paris” series Natalia Pavlovskaya.
Paris.
2004.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Lev Melikhov.
Antwerp.
2004.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Vladimir Grevi.
Toscana.
2005.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Vladimir Grevi.
Toscana.
2003.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Valery Sirovsky.
From the “Tuscany” series.
Collection of the author Valery Sirovsky.
Toscana.
2005.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Tim Parchikov.
Toledo.
2004.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Vladimir Grevi.
Belgium.
2004.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Vladimir Grevi.
Venice.
2005.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Lev Melikhov.
Venice.
2005.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Tim Parchikov.
Venice.
2003.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Alexander Slusarev.
Florence.
1995.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Natalia Pavlovskaya.
Marseille.
2004.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum Lev Melikhov.
London.
2005.
Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Lev Melikhov. Rome. 2005. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Grigory Yaroshenko. Rome. 2005. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Lev Melikhov. Rome. 2005. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Vladimir Mishukov. Paris. 2004. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Vladimir Mishukov. Paris. 2004. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

George Pervov. Paris. 2004. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

George Pervov. Paris. 2004. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Igor Mukhin. From “Paris” series

Igor Mukhin. From “Paris” series

Natalia Pavlovskaya. Paris. 2004. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Lev Melikhov. Antwerp. 2004. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Vladimir Grevi. Toscana. 2005. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Vladimir Grevi. Toscana. 2003. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Valery Sirovsky. From the “Tuscany” series. Collection of the author

Valery Sirovsky. Toscana. 2005. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Tim Parchikov. Toledo. 2004. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Vladimir Grevi. Belgium. 2004. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Vladimir Grevi. Venice. 2005. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Lev Melikhov. Venice. 2005. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Tim Parchikov. Venice. 2003. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Alexander Slusarev. Florence. 1995. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Natalia Pavlovskaya. Marseille. 2004. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Lev Melikhov. London. 2005. Collection Moscow House of Photography Museum

Lisbon, 25.10.2007—19.11.2007

exhibition is over

Galeria Torreao Nascente da Cordoaria Nacional

Portugal

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EUROPALIA.RUSSIA 2005

1 part: Bruxelles, Parc Leopold, Bibliotheque Solvay
05.10.2005—04.12.2005
2 part: Bruxelles, Centre d’Art de Rouge-Cloitre
22.10.2005—29.01.2006

EUROPALIA.RUSSIA 2005

1 part: Bruxelles, Parc Leopold, Bibliotheque Solvay
05.10.2005—04.12.2005
2 part: Bruxelles, Centre d’Art de Rouge-Cloitre
22.10.2005—29.01.2006

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Exhibition shedule

  • 5.10.2005—29.01.2006

    Brussel

    Bibliotheque Solvay

  • 25.10.2007—19.11.2007

    Lisbon

    Galeria Torreao Nascente da Cordoaria Nacional

For mass-media

The first «landing party» of foreign photographers — Roger Fenton, Jean-Charles Langlois, etc. — appeared in Russia as early as the mid-19th century. Their task was to shoot the battles of the Crimean War (1853–1856). Their works became the first war photo-reports, at the same time showing the world the landscapes of southern Russia. In those years Fenton also made the first shots of the Moscow Kremlin.

In the late 19-th and early 20-th centuries foreign photographers were actively working in Russia. On the contrary, the number of Russian photographers that depicted Europe was quite modest. Even though at the time Russia was experiencing a real photographic boom, its number of photo-ateliers almost equalling that of France, professional photographers were focused mainly on domestic affairs. In the majority of cases shots of other countries were created by amateurs. The few foreign photo-reports of Soviet Russia, made in the middle and late 1930s, appear more as an exception. Just as rare were European shots of Soviet photographers, such as El Lisitski’s illustrations for the book «My Paris», written by Ilia Erenburg. For a long time Europe and Russia were being divided by the «iron curtain», severing all cultural contacts, including photographic ones.

Khrushchev’s «thaw» of the late 1950s — early 1960s brought to Russia the best photographers of the second half of the 20th century: H. Cartier-Bresson, W. Klein, M. Riboud, S. Weiss, I. Morat, etc. The second mass appearance of foreign photographers in the USSR was connected with Gorbachev’s «perestroika». At this time Russia was constantly scrutinised by European cameras. As in the rest of the world, they were focused primarily on historical cataclysms. Another point of interest were the remains of the Soviet era, rapidly disappearing as years went by.

Russian photographers began to depict Europe, as well as other continents, only in the last decade, when the disappearance of the «iron curtain» made it easy to travel around the world. In the preceding epoch this was possible for only a handful of very lucky Soviet citizens, who were permitted to go abroad, such as Georgi Petrusov, Dmitri Baltermants and Lev Boroduli For many years there existed in Russia two myths about Europe: the official one — of the terrifying and dangerous society of inhuman capitalism, and the other, born in opposition to Soviet propaganda, — of the «earthly paradise» and the civilisation of total prosperity. Reality, which unfolded itself before the eyes of Russian photographers, proved to be something different. It was this reality which formed the reference network for the direct and unbiased approach of the authors represented at the Exhibition, encouraging their individual freedom and the trust in one’s emotional experience.

The thirteen artists who take part in the exhibition «The Russian View of Europe» belong to different generations. Some of them, like Valeri Sirovski (b. 1939) and Alexander Zabrin (b. 1948), spent most of their lives in Soviet Russia. Timofei Parshchikov (b. 1983) and Natalia Pavlovskaya (b. 1982) are children of «perestroika», who grew up in new Russia. They are all united by an intentional absence of any fixed ideological or conceptual approach towards the «other» European reality, which is so often present in the oeuvre of Western photographers returning from Russia. In Europe they depict the same subjects, which form the existential basis for their work at home.

For example, Vladimir Grevi, Valeri Sirovski and Lev Melikhov are primarily concerned with the architectonics of space, be it architecture or landscape. Possibly this is the reason that they prefer Italy among other countries. The precisely structured compositions of Vladimir Grevi, the cultural reflection of Lev Melikhov and the subtle lyricism of Valeri Sirovski represent three different and very personal Russian views of Italy.

Semion Faibisovich, Alexander Sliusarev and Timofei Parshchikov are mostly interested in visual paradoxes, in the relations between light, colour and object in a new cultural environment. Igor Moukhin, Vladimir Mishukov, Natalia Pavlovskaya and Andrei Gordasevich focus their attention on people. They are fascinated by striking personalities and by the states of complete artistic self-expression. In the Soviet Union the collective dominated over the individual. To differ from others was unacceptable and even dangerous. The age-old European tolerance towards the individual and its manifestations becomes a particularly attractive theme for Russian photographers in Europe.

The photographs of Georgi Pervov and Alexander Zabrin are aimed against tourist myths. Shooting the cult places of pilgrimage, such as the Eiffel Tower or the Tuileries Garden, etc., they create new perspective with a new atmosphere, destroying the traditional compositional cliches of objects and events.

Opening itself to Russian photographers, Europe, in its turn, opens each one of them. Carefully seeking for and examining large and small details, through which the singular atmosphere and personality of every country is revealed, the lenses of the authors inevitably suggest a certain comparison with the reality of Russia, be it similarity or dissonance. The very possibility of such a comparison gives us a priceless experience of better understanding each other.

Olga Sviblova, Director of the Museum «Moscow House of Photography»

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