Exhibition "Era of Samson" dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the revolution Automatic translate
с 17 Ноября
по 3 Декабря
Мемориальный музей “Творческая Мастерская С.Т.Коненкова”
Тверской бульвар, 28
Russian Academy of Arts, Memorial Museum "Creative Workshop S.T. Konenkova "present the exhibition" Era of Samson ", dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the revolution.
The opening of the exhibition will take place on November 17, 2017 at 18.00 (Tverskaya Boulevard, 28)
The exhibition exhibits sculptural and graphic works by S.T. Konenkova (1874-1971), dedicated to the revolution, and also for the first time presented a draft monument to V.I. Lenin, performed in conjunction with the architect S.G. Brodsky for the competition of the monument to V.I. Lenin on the Sparrow Hills in 1957.
A special part of the exhibition is occupied by the reconstruction of the model of the monument.
The creative activity of Sergei Timofeevich Konenkov began at the turn of the eighties and nineties of the nineteenth century and developed over eight decades, coinciding with one of the most difficult and turbulent eras of world history - the era of grand wars and revolutions. “Under the sign of the events of the first Russian revolution, I took shape and grew up as an artist. On the barricades of Presnya, the soul of the rebellious people opened before me… ”, the sculptor wrote in his memoirs. The revolution, the idea of spiritual renewal and spiritual transformation was indeed a special component of Konenkov’s worldview. At the beginning of the twentieth century, he, a fighter and a rebel, came to the art world, destroying academic standards. It is no coincidence that his first sculpture, a graduation project depicting Samson tearing the fetters, was destroyed by the academic authorities. “It was conceived by me as a protest, as an embodiment of pathos of gigantic power,” Konenkov will write later.
The legendary biblical hero, “noble titan” Samson is the image that accompanied the sculptor throughout his life and became a kind of symbolic sign not only of his work, but also of the great era he experienced. “From my youth, I was fascinated by the solar legend of the noble titanium. Samson faithfully served his people, saving him from the slavery of the Philistines. Each time he beat the enemies of his people, and then the oppressors decided to deal with him. They bribed the insidious Delilah, instructing her to find out the secret of Samson’s strength. The trusting Titan opened his heart to her, and Delilah, intoxicating the national hero, cut off his seven braids. In them was his strength. The Philistines gouged out Samson’s eyes and bound him with copper chains. But Samson’s hair was regrown again, and he brought down upon the oppressors the columns and walls of the temple, in which they mocked him… ”
It was with Samson that the first flowering of Konenkov’s art began - we are talking about the aforementioned thesis “Samson Tearing the Bond” (1902), performed within the walls of the St. Petersburg Academy of Arts. Contemporary art criticism saw in this work one of the most significant phenomena of the new Russian sculpture. The artist, as it were, “found himself,” the first mythological gift of Konenkov was first manifested here. “I wanted to reflect in this statue the mood of my life,” the sculptor told the critic Sergey Glagol about his work. “I saw that the end to the people’s patience was near, that the colossus people could no longer bear the chains that bound it.” He was about to make an inhuman effort to break the strong, centuries-old bonds that bound him. Yes. Will, but will it break? And I felt, I foresaw that this would not happen immediately. The path to freedom is not easy… But the time will come and the exhausted titan will breathe. He will again gather his strength, make a new, even greater effort and break the bonds of slavery… "
The events of 1917 catch Konenkova at the top of fame and creative heyday. He joyfully and gleefully accepted this revolution, which became for the artist the most significant event in life - in his personal and philosophical perception of being. Finally his world came - the world with which he dreamed, and Konenkov felt like his messiah, prophet, warrior of a dream come true. Like many contemporaries, the sculptor perceived the February and October revolutions as part of the “spirit revolution”, as a “cleansing storm” - that storm that will sweep away the corrupted old order and cleanse the earth for a new birth.
From the first "Samson Tearing Bond" comes an endless string of symbolic images of the same name, graphic and sculptural, created by the master in different countries, in different years. Time itself seems to have filled these works with new meanings. Exhausted, clipped Samson, when "the spirit of God departed from him"… Blinded Samson, returning to God… Samson punishing… "Freed man"… As Konenkov himself said, it was Samson who could symbolize Russia, which went through the blood of World War II…
All this variety of religious and philosophical searches and the forms of their expression of Konenkov’s “Samsoniana” we present for the first time at the new exhibition dedicated to the 100th anniversary of the revolution - “The Samson Era”. A special place in the exhibition is occupied by the reconstruction of the competition for the monument to V.I. Lenin on the Vorobyovy Gory, completed by Konenkov in 1957 together with the architect S.G. Brodsky. This, perhaps, the most unusual project in the history of Soviet art, a grandiose project was a complex monumental complex “with hundreds of figures on the terraces and stairs descending to the Moscow River”, huge obelisks topped with constellations, and a rotating central sculptural composition with a figure Lenin on the globe, arranged in such a way, "that Lenin’s hand constantly pointed to the Sun." Agreeing with one of the critics, we “will still think that not the rotation of the globe and the globe itself is the main thing in the project”: dozens of sculptures remained outlined only in the sketches, but were executed by Konenkov with such endearing temperament and skill that they are self-sufficient and magnificent already by themselves and deserve the closest attention of the viewer…
The exhibition runs until December 3, 2017.