Colours of Love and Memory marking the 90th anniversary of Boris Ivanovich Gorbunov’s birth

Boris Ivanovich Gorbunov was born in Kirillov on August 6, 1922. His father, Ivan Fyodorovich, was an engineer of hydraulic works construction of the Kuzminsky section. His mother, Lilia Ivanovna, was a housewife.

The Gorbunovs brought up five children. All of them chose their own ways in life.

Gift for painting which became evident already in his childhood determined Boris’ walk of life. His children’s drawings attracted attention of adults. As it often happens in children’s life, he depicted fairy tales which he had heard and books that he had read. Later Boris started to create sketches from nature, landscapes, and portraits of his relatives.

On leaving ten-year secondary school in 1941, Boris Gorbunov taught drawing and painting in the Kirillov secondary school. He wanted to get professional art education and entered Moscow Art Institute in 1943. He studied at the Department of Sculpture. But difficult unsettled student’s life and illnesses (Boris Gorbunov was a disabled person of group II since 1939) made him return to Kirillov.

Only after the war, he managed to continue his study, but already in the Moscow Art School “Memory of 1905”. He was recognized as a wonderful landscape painter there. In 1950, a year later after he graduated from the art school, Boris Gorbunov fulfilled his cherished dream and began to study in the Moscow Surikov Art Institute.

On graduating from the institute, he was assigned to the Painting Art Centre and his difficult life with two small children started (Boris’ wife died in the student days). Work in the centre included many trips in order to collect material. He travelled all over the country from the south to the north and from the west to the east. It resulted in plenty of large subject pictures, as it was determined by the orders of the Painting Art Centre.

The artist taught during a lot of years giving his knowledge, strength and energy to his pupils. He could fully devote himself to creative activity only in the middle of the 1980s. In one of the letters to his sister, he wrote: “Only now I am really busy with creative work and I still have strength for it...”

Creative activity of the artist Boris Gorbunov was concordant with creative work of the writers B.P. Astafiev, V.I. Belov, the poet N.M. Rubtsov. Colours of love and memory can be seen in the pictures depicting images of the native land. The portrait “For Motherland” stirs up deep emotions. It tells about a short life of Viktor Gorbunov - the artist’s brother who died in the battle near Balaton Lake in Hungary on March 21, 1945.

Boris Gorbunov participated in many Moscow, republican and All-Union exhibitions. He prepared for his first large one-man exhibition in the capital for three years. But the artist was not to see it. He died on August 4, 1989.

His daughter Tatiana Borisovna Gorbunova donated 19 works of her father to the Kirillo-Belozersky museum-reserve. They are often displayed at museum exhibitions and expositions. The native town remembers and reveres the memory of its talented fellow-townsman. A commemorative plaque was unveiled on the house ¹ 12 in Preobrazhensky Street in 2004.

E. Petrushova, research officer of the museum

leave comment