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Exhibition of works by Helium Korzheva in the Tretyakov Gallery

“Acute”, “paradoxical”, “powerful”, “long-awaited” - Heli Korzhev’s first retrospective in the country is being discussed. Strong, unexpected, real - Korzhev "clings to the living." The canonical works and themes unknown to a wide audience - from biblical scenes to eerie, almost Bosch-like “Turlyks” - more than 150 works of the artist were collected in the halls on Krymsky Val.Someone called Helium Korzhev as an “artist of Russian misfortune,” but the matter is rather different. In his works there is always a strong emotion that causes keen empathy, not always pleasant to the viewer.Egorka-Letun, Helium Mikhailovich Korzhev1976, 200 × 280 cmThe exhibition contains works from the largest museums of Russia and the world. “Exhibition without cliché,” says the director of the Tretyakov Gallery, Zelfira Tregulova.The series "Scorched by fire of war." Traces of the WarGelium Mikhailovich Korzhev1965, 200 × 150 cm “The exhibition, brilliantly invented, begins abruptly - with a direct, sharp, piercing gaze. This is one single eye on the burned soldier's face, from which there is no strength to turn away, although it is not easy to sustain this look. There will be almost no further eyes, there will be black dips instead of Lenin's eyes, closed eyes, the absence of the eyes of many characters, and Homer's eyesworm. There will be expertly written flesh (straight Russian Lucian Freud), knotted fingers, the power of clenched fists. There will be a real, passionate love for the working man - a plowman, a warrior, an artist. Russian world. There will be endless attempts to raise the red flag or go up yourself. “Get up, Ivan!” - the address of Helium Korzhev to a drunk Russian man in a padded jacket, lying on the snow, like a broken Icarus. Ivan does not hear, can not get up. People, warriors and heroes turn into monster-lions in the works of 90-2000. Death blows the dawn. The disaster that Korzhev wrote, dared him too. I was fascinated by myself. But not broke. Strong turned out to be an old man. He died with his country, he died when the Idea nourishing his truth finally degenerated, ”wrote about the exhibition and about the artist Kirill Serebrennikov, one of the main cultural heroes of Moscow, artistic director of the Gogol Center.In the photo from the exhibition - the painting “Raising the flag” by Helium Korzheva.Arise, Ivan! Helium Mikhailovich Korzhev 1997, 131 × 193 cmSam Korzhev, jokingly, called himself an “old socialist realist.” However, his pictures reflect the reality of socialism rather than socialism. Spiritual realism is what attracts. Occupying high positions in the Union of Artists, in the works of Korzhev, he managed to escape from the glossy picture of the political order. Art critics believe Helium Korzhev as a representative of the “stern style”, but the artist himself said on this subject: “Petrov-Vodkin and Deineka started the stern style, not we!”.Old wounds Helium Mikhailovich Korzhev 200 × 209 cm Helium Korzhev was born in 1925, in Moscow. The era of change, the Second World War, revival. Overcoming the fear of its own display in the water, a man wanted to keep this phantom. All sorts of means were tried: water tanks, polished surfaces, experiments with tin, etc. Finally, the centuries-old experiments ended in that we can all see ourselves from morning to evening, and the mirror turned from a mysterious and sinister into an ordinary household item. But in the history of painting the mirrors had and continues a stormy and bright life. So why are artists so fond of them? Read more The countries of the Soviets, the "construction of the century" - all this was reflected in his work. Helium Korzhev received a thorough artistic education. After graduating from the Moscow Art Institute named after V. I. Surikov (workshop of the head of the socialist direction of Sergei Gerasimov), the young painter gained wide popularity. His triptych "The Communists" (1957−1960) and paintings from the series "scorched by fire of war" (1962−1967) - a classic of social realism.Triptych "The Communists: Raising the Banner" Helium Mikhailovich Korzhev 1960, 156 × 290 cm “In art I value my freedom most of all. Freedom is to write what I want, and the way I feel and can "LoversGeliy Mikhailovich Korzhev1959, 156 × 207 cmKorzhev took the policy out of his canvases; let there be red banners, and leaders, and very simple people - the artist always turns to the spirit, to the inner world, to eternity in the eyes of ... Watching?

“Here, in the image of a strictly soldier, he portrayed his father, a famous architect, constructivist Mikhail Korzhev. And the girl is his daughter Irina, ”said Zelfira Tregulova, general director of the Tretyakov Gallery. - This is not a pathetic poster images, it is an experience of what it was. And that is why many of these images are associated with people close to the artist. ”
Helium Korzhev. Anxiety. 1965

Seeing off. From the series "Scorched by War" Helium Mikhailovich Korzhev1967, 200 × 200 cmMother. From the series "Scorched by Fire of War" Helium Mikhailovich Korzhev1967, 200 × 223 cmClouds of 1945Gelium Mikhailovich Korzhev1985, 200 × 190 cmThe artist Gely Korzhev 1961, 160 × 195 cm “Village” and “social” still lifes of Korzhev invariably remained for him not only a creative laboratory, but also an exact statement about time (“The Glass of Milk”, 1984; The State Tretyakov Gallery; “Social Still Life”, 1992, private meeting, USA).Glass of milkGeliy Mikhailovich Korzhev1984, 73 × 90 cmThose who consider the cycle of Korzhev's paintings “Tyrlik” to be satirical are mistaken — this is also realism, expressed through the artist’s personal perception of the changes taking place in the country.Turlyki and alien. SketchGely Mikhailovich Korzhev1986, 56 × 76 cm The horror, confusion, blood and the terrible reality of the 90s of the last century, odious figures of the political establishment - all this is reflected in the "Turlyk". This is how Helium Korzhev saw this time, and the nasty, terrible Türliks ​​cause nausea and rejection, sometimes even from recognizing some characters, situations, overtones that are relevant in modern times. In any time.Triumphal Helium Mikhailovich Korzhev 1996, 150 × 198 cmStruggleGelium Mikhailovich Korzhev1987, 11.9 × 91 cmTurqlik number 2: In the hairdressing salonHeliy Mikhailovich Korzhev1991, 99 × 79 cmThe last two decades, Helium Korzhev worked away from people and fuss, turning to the biblical scenes. The first exhibition of paintings of this cycle was shown to the public after the death of the artist, in 2012, in the capital's Institute of Russian Realistic Art. The exhibition “The Bible through the eyes of a socialist realist” caused a great resonance: the unusual subject matter and depth of its research and reflection, and all the same realistic skill of transmitting emotions, shocked.Deprived of paradiseGelium Mikhailovich Korzhev1998, 130 × 160 cmAnnunciationGeliy Korzhev1990, 91 × 150 cm “Christmas”, “Annunciation”, “Crucifixion” ... Expelling the communist propaganda of atheism, Helium Korzhev wrote his “Bible cycle” for a long time, leaving all official positions after his parents died in 1986. “There are enemies, there are friends, but there is no politics” - he spoke about the subjects of his canvases. "Annunciation" Korzhev wrote ten years, many times rewritten the painting "Adam and Eve" ... The cycle was presented for the first time in 2007 at an exhibition in the USA; the artist did not leave this topic until the end of life.On the cross, Helium Mikhailovich Korzhev, 1998, 93 × 93 cm. The exhibition features 160 works, of which 38 paintings were presented by collector Raymond Johnson. This is a great success for the Tretyakov Gallery, and a lot of the work that was carried out by curators and director Zelfira Tregulova - for the last five years, the exchange of exhibits with American museums is almost impossible. Many paintings are exhibited for the first time.

Not so long ago, the “Korzhev Foundation” published the book “Icon Library”, in which more than 1600 illustrations were collected. These are unknown to the general public paintings of Helium Korzhev, etudes and sketches, graphics, and archival photographs. On the pages of the volume edition there is the history of the Korzhevs family, the biography and diaries of the artist, the creative process of creating paintings, from sketches to finished work.

Helium Korzhev. Don Quixote. 1985Gelie Korzhev's paintings inspire the viewer not only to look - see, feel and think. Will the exhibition of works Korzheva in the Tretyakov Gallery as popular as the exhibition Serov? Probably not, but the opportunity to touch really great art can still be appreciated.
The exhibition of works by Helium Korzheva in the State Tretyakov Gallery is open until June 14, 2016. The main illustration: Helium Korzhev. Bugler. 2008