More than 60 most original views of Kazan — result of All-Russian Plein Air

The final exhibition of the first stage of So-tvorenie project opened in the Gallery of Modern Art, Kazan

More than 60 most original views of Kazan — result of All-Russian Plein Air
Photo: Ilya Repin

Artists from all over Russia, who came to Kazan to paint our city and thus congratulate the republic on the centenary of the formation of the TASSR, summed up the creative results. These are more than 60 paintings in different styles and genres, but equally glorifying the beauty and identity of Tatarstan. The correspondent of Realnoe Vremya got acquainted with the works.

Prom night of the plein air

This hot July night, the first floor of the Gallery of Modern Art was filled with a joyful hubbub — the artists resembled birthday parties or graduates who came to get an assessment or recognition of their work. It was felt that they had worked hard and that they had a happy tiredness because of their work. .

“The exhibition has shown that among all the guests who have come from different cities of Russia — Crimea, Kaliningrad, and neighbouring republics and cities of the Volga Region, as well as Vladivostok — there is not a single ordinary person. The paintings turned out really with a quality mark," Dina Akhmetova, the adviser to the director of the State Museum of Fine Arts of the Republic of Tatarstan, shared her impressions. “We see, it would seem, the same Kazan, but at the same time so different, with the eyes of a realist artist, impressionist, abstract artist. We see how much joy the works are filled with, and the heat of the July days, during which they worked in Kazan and Sviyazhsk, Arakchino and Raifa, is transmitted to the viewer.

The first floor of the Gallery of Modern Art was filled with a joyful hubbub this hot July night

Sun after a thunderstorm, or Non-plein air results

Dina Akhmetova stressed that the event has a double value, since it happened at a time when all people feel a lack of communication and events, especially in the field of culture. The grant for the plein air event was allocated last year, but the pandemic put the event at risk of cancellation.

But the artists' dreams have come true. If you look even further, the idea was born even before the allocation of funds by the Presidential Grants Fund of Russia — during the annual plein air, for which the Tatarstan artists went to the Crimea. For five years in a row, their work could be seen in the first days of September in Kazan: the exhibitions “Crimea in My Heart” reflected not only the mood and beauty of nature but also the special longing of the Russian people for the sea, warm lands and, let's face it, a carefree holiday with its walks through mysterious and picturesque places… At the same time, the Tatarstan artists, going to visit, introduced Crimeans to the culture, history and customs of Tatarstan, having held 15 exhibitions over five years. As a result, it was decided to invite only Crimean artists to paint Kazan at first, and then creators from other cities joined the project. Thus, 48 artists participated in the first stage of the project, 30 of them came from 10 Russian regions, and 18 of them represented Tatarstan.

“For six months, no exhibition opening in Kazan has attracted such a large number of guests. I had a feeling as if the sun came out through the dark clouds after a thunderstorm — Kazan looks so bright in the paintings of artists," said Ozad Khabibullin, people's artist of Uzbekistan, honoured artist of the Republic of Tatarstan. “When a person sees something for the first time, this impression remains with them forever — like a child's memories, like first love. The artists captured the essence of Kazan. Their freshness of perception caused me emotion and delight, we ourselves seemed to see our city for the first time, with different eyes.

These are rather complete, full-fledged canvases that seem to have been worked on in a workshop

By the way, the guests of the exhibition noted that the results of the plein air are not exactly “plein air” in essence. These are not sketches, with which the outing usually end for the artist when working from life. These are rather complete, full-fledged canvases that seem to have been worked on in a workshop.

Who seemed to see Ivan the Terrible in Kazan

For 11 days, every day one could see artists with easels in different parts of Kazan: from four in the morning until late at night, they were painting the city. This is how interesting works were born, which one can see at the final exhibition: 'Locomotive boat station by Rezeds Yamanova and 'A blue day. Peterburgskaya Street' by Yevgenia Yumanova, the colorful mosaic 'A Radiant Kazan” and 'The Great Bulgarians' by Madiyar Khaziev, unexpected harmony with the canvas 'Ivan the Terrible and his son Ivan', reflected in the painting 'The Past and Thoughts' by Vasil Shaykhetdinov, and, of course, much more.

Many artists called the work of Bato Dugarzhapov a decoration of the exhibition. He also said that he first saw Kazan in November last year, and during this visit, his inspiration resulted in a bright still life 'Torzhok in Sviyazhsk' and the landscape 'Red Bulak'. Many recognizable places can be seen at the exhibition, but Kazan courtyards are also reflected in the works of plein air participants.

Many recognizable places are displayed at the exhibition, but Kazan courtyards are also reflected in the works of plein air participants

“Now we have friends in different parts of Russia. We also saw great workers who worked equally productively at night and in the early morning hours," the head of the plein air, Mudaris Mingazov, concluded.

How Crimea gives way to Kazan

The Kazan exhibition will last until August 10. As noted by the chairman of the board of the Union of Artists of Tatarstan, Albert Shiabiev, a big trip awaits the paintings. They are going to travel through nine more cities and villages of Tatarstan, visit everywhere where there are exhibition halls, including in Sviyazhsk, Bolgar, Nizhnekamsk, Naberezhnye Chelny, Leninogorsk. It was also previously stated that after “the tour”, part of the paintings will go to charity. They are supposed to be given to nursing homes and orphanages. But for now, you can see on the labels that each work is the property of the artist, who can now safely call the project in the new way — 'Kazan in My Heart'.

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By Anna Tarletskaya. Photo: Ilya Repin
Tatarstan