Exhibition of art works made with elements of recreation of an art technique that has been practiced in our country for more than 10 centuries opened on September 10 at a cozy gallery “ABC-art” on Vozdvyzhenska Street 10B.
“Valerii Shkarupa’s project ‘Inner Mongolia’ takes us to the Ukrainian philosophical thought of the 15th century. Yurii Drohobych and Pavlo Rusyn focused on the problem of man’s inner world and thanks to that took their place in the humanist philosophy of Renaissance, which asserted self-sufficient value of every person,” said Alla MARYCHEVSKA, art director of the gallery “ABC-art,” speaking with The Day. “While philosophers try to convey to the world the results of self-cognition through words, artists somewhat more accurately reflect the vision of their microcosm through the talent of capturing visual images. Since the harmony between a separate world of an individual and macrocosm doesn’t appear from nowhere, it requires great effort and exploration. Valerii Shkarupa finds his unique way of keeping the balance of these worlds in his artistic career.”
Two years ago Valerii Shkarupa at the opening of his exhibition “Results of Fatigue” in the same gallery with joy revealed the secrets of his art technique. This year’s exposition features mainly new art works. It is fantastic how quickly Shkarupa creates new pieces, considering how difficult and time-consuming the process of working with gesso is. By the way, gesso is the name of the soil, which was used in medieval painting, most often in iconography. On the territory of Kyivan Rus’ this technique was spread even back in the 10th century, it was brought here with the icons from the Byzantine Empire. Canvas was stretched onto dry lime or alder plank and then gesso was applied. Today we can say confidently and responsibly that this old technique experiences reincarnation, it again attracts artists. Therefore, it turns out that artists use unconventional creative approach in traditional art. Shkarupa is considered to be one of such artists-regenerators.
This artist has never been alone. He has always actively collaborated with colleagues as the author of the idea and curator of the international project “Raku-Ceramics” (from 1993) and international symposia of land art (2000-02). At the same time this artist manages to define private area of his own soul, preserve uniqueness and chamber character of the inner world, not allowing society to dilute or interfere with the borders of his “Inner Mongolia.”
Geographically the Inner Mongolia is a large territory which covers a part of China and Mongolia (from 1947 it is an autonomous region in the north of China), from the Altai to Gobi, and it exceeds the area of, let’s say, France and Germany together. In this area there appeared a “culture in culture” that greatly influenced the development of civilization, which was explored by the prominent paleontologist and writer Ivan Yefremov in the early 20th century. Keeping through the years the great memories and impressions from friendly chats with this outstanding writer and his wife Taisia, Shkarupa embodied his feelings that have been crystallizing for decades in entire series of gesso on canvas: “Oriental,” “Palimpsest,” “Ikhtis,” “Sargasi,” and “Inner Mongolia.”
“Each one of us defines for himself his personal ‘Inner Mongolia’ – a territory of a soul,” said the artist Valerii Shkarupa.
Exhibition “Inner Mongolia” will be open until October 5. Admission is free.
The Day’s FACT FILE
Valerii Shkarupa was born in 1950 in Sumy. He works as a ceramist, painter, and graphic artist. In mid-1990s he actively participated in archaeological expeditions: in Ukrainian natural reserve “Olvia,” in Moldova (Old Orhei), Armenia (Metsamor), southern Siberia (Tisul), Uzbekistan (Samarkand, Bukhara), and Russia (Taman). Since 1997 Shkarupa is a member of the all-Ukrainian Union “BZh-art.”