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OLEG

VASILIEV

(1931)

 

NOVEMBER. BEECH. FLORIDA

1991

Oil on canvas

180х135,5 cm

Artist, a leader of unofficial art of the 1960’s/ 1970’s.

He was born in Moscow.

He studied at art school, then in the Vasily Surikov Art Institute (1952 –1958). He studied, together with Bulatov and Kabakov, under V. Favorsky.

Jointly with Erik Bulatov, Vasiliev illustrated children’s books for Detgiz and Malysh Publishing House starting from the early 1960’s. Their creative tandem successfully existed for 33 years. In the same period, the artist began investigating into the capacities of painting as of a specific language. Based on Favorsky’s system, he studied the “picture world” problem, its surface and boundaries, its inner energy currents, transformation of objects and space within a canvas. In 1965, Vasiliev creates his first work – House at Anzer – that he believes to be the start of his creative work. The main topics of the artist’s work were the memories of his home, roads, forests, fields, friends, family. Even now Vasiliev uses these topics in his work, often making a recourse to literary quotations and allusions – from classical to modern literature, from Chekhov, Faulkner, Homer to Vsevolod Nekrasov etc. Literary links are a key to the picture space. Many of his works exist in a sequence, each of them being connected with all others. In 1990, the artist left for the U.S.A. Oleg Vasiliev’s photorealistic poetics is one of the most remarkable phenomena in the modern Russian painting culture.

Since 1964, member of the USSR Journalists’ Union. Since 1983, member of the Moscow United Committee of Graphic Artists. Winner of the Liberty award for achievements in Russo-U.S. culture and development of cultural links between Russia and the U.S.A.