Figurative Reconstruction Based on Russian Popular Print and Folk Picture. On the occasion of the 200th Anniversary of the Patriotic War of 1812

Such works are called “primitive”. This term doesn’t have any attitudinal meaning as the structure of the word picture in this art is often more complicated and therefore “primitive” is not primitive at all.

At present we witness a sudden increase of interest in “primitive”. It naturally blends with modern interior giving it unique historicity and nostalgic delicacy.

In 1970, Viktor Ivanovich Novikov organized an art workshop “NOVIK” where folk artists worked in the “primitive” style taking materials of old engravings, popular prints and folk pictures as models.

Viktor Novikov is a member of the Union of Russian Artists since 1998, a corresponding member of the Peter’s Academy of Sciences and Art since 2008, a member of the Vologda Union of Writers-Local Historians since 2010. He participates in regional, interregional, All-Russian and international art exhibitions.

He was always interested in the world of old things, ancient semantics and folk culture. This interest developed into the opening of an art workshop. A community of like-minded persons was formed. They were united with an idea of the revival of ancient folk traditions.

2012 marked the 200th anniversary of the Patriotic War of 1812. At that time it was the most popular subject in artists’ works: along with portraits of the war heroes and battle scenes, they grotesquely depicted the army of Bonaparte. A special printing-house was opened in the headquarters of M.I. Kutuzov during the first months of the war. It was destined to conduct propaganda among the population and army. New forms of influence on the society for Russia were found: satirical cartoons of Bonaparte and his army. This subject was also reflected in the artists’ works created in the 1960-1970s. They used a series of engravings of the artists A.G. Venetsianov and M.I. Terebenev and others as models.

Various episodes of the military campaign are satirically represented in these works: “Napoleon’s dance”, “Napoleon divides Europe among his relatives”, and others.

Figurative reconstruction of folk pictures made in the workshop “NOVIK”, as originals at that time, amaze not only connoisseurs, but also everybody who in interested in folk culture with ingenious originality.

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