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At the exhibition of Yuri Norshtein: "Not just to see, but to find internal connections"

Having visited the exhibition of works by animator-artist, director Yury Norshtein “Poet’s Table” in the Altman Gallery in Tel Aviv, we managed to talk with an amazing storyteller and philosopher.... There is still time before the opening of the gallery, but spectators have already gathered near its door. “Come in, but Norstein has not come yet. Will you wait for him? ”The gallery employee invites. Those gathered agree to wait: I want not only to see the sketches of famous and beloved cartoons and prints-giclee on them, but also to talk with the master, buy his books and get an autograph.Books by Y. Norshtein His children and adults watch cartoons with the same pleasure. They look many times, finding for themselves more and more new shades, meanings, ideas.“A gray top” ... Probably, the fact is that in Norshtein's cartoons, so simple at first glance, like in Japanese poetry, not even double - a triple “bottom”. Not for nothing, one of the walls of the exhibition hall is occupied by the portrait Portrait - a realistic genre depicting a person or a group of people existing in reality. The portrait - in the French reading - portrait, from the old French portraire - "reproduce something line in line." Another facet of the name of the portrait lies in the outdated word "parsuna" - from the Latin. persona - "person; person". Read more Basju work of the wife of Yuri Borisovich - Francesca Narbusova, and his essay about the poet.- This exhibition is more Francesca. Here are exhibited giclee according to her sketches. We work in pairs. I draw a design - Francesca makes a sketch. It is only her hand. In this sense, she is an incredible artist. I am also a person drawing. These pictures on the "Hedgehog in the Fog" are mine. With the exception of two - the snail, crawling out from under the sheet and one sketching. But we are in mutual dependence, as it should be in family relations. Therefore, consider that our work is a family contract, - Norshtein laughs - But, of course, without it I could not have done anything. I would have to look for another artist, equally talented. And to find such an artist is extremely difficult.
The creator of the cartoon recognizes that many characters and episodes are his idea, but "an idea without execution either becomes an ideology or becomes dead."Entering the exhibition hall, the viewer immediately gets into an installation made by Yuri Norstein specifically for the gallery space. From the entrance to the opposite wall stretches a black canopy, culminating in the frame "Seeing off to the front" from "Tales of Fairy Tales". On the sides of the canopy on black fabric are sketches-storyboard episodes leading to this climax scene.

Here on the walls there is a gray top, a bear cub, a hedgehog, a sad horse, other characters of the cult tales of fairy tales and a hedgehog in the fog, sketches of episodes for these cartoons. On the monitors - broadcast frames from "Fairy Tales". In the middle of the hall there is a gramophone on a stool covered with a lace napkin, on which couples swirl under the endless tango "The tired sun". Nearby, on a wooden platform covered with snow, is a lonely lantern, and under it is the silhouette of a cowering Akaki Akakiyevich ("The Overcoat"). And behind him hovering flat figures of the heroes of Norstein's cartoons.

- "Hedgehog ...", "Fairy Tale" - a separate world, but a world based on reality. Because “The Fairy Tale” is my childhood, this is the space of my yard, my neighbors, this is me, this is my aunt, who has returned from the front. It is winter, it is a premonition that the snow is falling now, you will put on your skis and go to the yard to ride ...

... In the same room - a large photo of Narbusova at her desk and her autobiography.

In the next smaller hall, his portrait Portrait is a realistic genre depicting a person or a group of people existing in reality. The portrait - in the French reading - portrait, from the old French portraire - "reproduce something line in line." Another facet of the name of the portrait lies in the outdated word "parsuna" - from the Latin. persona - "person; person". Read further at the desktop, decorated as a frame of film. Cut through the "windows" - frames from the "Overcoat". The multiplier itself mounts a frame from a cartoon. Next - portrait Portrait - a realistic genre, depicting an existing person or a group of people. The portrait - in the French reading - portrait, from the old French portraire - "reproduce something line in line." Another facet of the name of the portrait lies in the outdated word "parsuna" - from the Latin. persona - "person; person". Read more Basho and Norstein's essay about him.
- We have a joint work. This photo says a lot. It was made a long time ago, 20 years ago, - Norshtein shows a picture of his wife. - Sits Francesca, this is her desk. And behind her sketches. On the right channel, is a human figure. This is Akaky Akakievich. If you look at this black wall (waving a hand to the next room) - I am standing over the layout. We have to shoot an episode where he goes through the Petersburg canal.- Yuri Borisovich, what is the concept of the exhibition?
- You see, culture should be protected, life should be protected. Unfortunately, this is costing colossal sacrifices. Why? This is a question for the rulers. Art, culture, the human soul, a gentle baby soul must be protected. This theme takes place in the movie "Fairy Tale" through the moment. It is not by chance that this collage is hanging here - the baby is at the breast.
For me, this is not just an exhibition exposition, where you can see some separate sketches for films. In my opinion, this exhibition should have its own dramatic connections, to show that life, art are paid a heavy price.
I would like the audience to immediately “enter” into the exhibition space, its internal drama. The exposition opens with the episode "Seeing off to the front". This is a Soviet story, the beginning of the Second World War. And this episode in the "Fairy Tale" is essential. The viewer should not just come to see, but try to find some internal connections.- How do you find funding for your work?
- In matters of finance, I am an adherent of statehood in art. There should be private financing, but state funding is a priority. Because the private will still pursue only commercial success, and therefore the chance that outstanding films may appear is almost nil. Because no one wants to risk. And I always worked at risk. I, in fact, suffered. I had a very successful first film, The Fox and the Hare, 1973. Then there was the "Heron and Crane". Then - "Hedgehog in the fog." In my cartoons there was no anti-Soviet. I am not interested in this question. Or you should be engaged in a policy, or art.- Censorship are not afraid?

- Censorship is always there. With private property, the censor will be the owner. And he will say: it does not suit me, redo it. Cases when money and outstanding result converge are extremely few.
Interviewed and photographed by Inna Katz.Arthiv: read us in Telegram and see on Instagram