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 10 November - 6 December 2003

In his art Vladimir Ovchinnikov frequently turns to ancient myths and scriptural topics, provoking the audience to interpret his works as mythological messages. But simultaneously he replaces the characters of the chosen parable with his own personage – excessively carnal and narcissist one. The personage does not correspond with any kind of advisability – neither with the mythological, nor with the realistic one. He remains alien and destructive without regard to the context in which the artist puts him. At the same time he possesses independence from the subject and his own pictorial persuasiveness. Perhaps, that is the reason why Ovchinnikov is always successful in replacing live characters with different objects – details, vegetables, and even outlines.

Ovchinnikov’s paintings give us a fine example of artistic interpretation of absurdity. Nothing could be more absurd than a human being. Ovchinnikov is good at showing us how a man denies every possible advisability (which turns to be only a dream of his reason) – only by means of his presence.

Vladimir Ovchinnikov was born and educated in Russia. Working in the Mariinsky Theatre of St Petersburg as an assistant to the artist Kirill Kustodiev and then in the State Hermitage Museum, was a true school for Ovchinnikov. Further he proceeded with working on church restorations. Since the middle of the 60’s he participated actively in exhibitions of underground art in Russia and abroad.

At the present time, Ovchinnikov is a recognised artist living in St Petersburg. His works are on display in museums and galleries in Russia, USA, France, Germany, and other countries. His oil paintings and bronze sculptures can be found in the collections of the Museum of Underground Art (Jersey City, USA), the Metropolitan Art Museum (New York, USA), the State Tretyakov Gallery (Moscow, Russia), Museum of Modern Art (Moscow, Russia), the State Hermitage (St Petersburg, Russia), the State Russian Museum (St Petersburg, Russia), Dostoevsky Literary Memorial Museum (St Petersburg, Russia), the State Museum of St Petersburg History (St Petersburg, Russia), the Beijing Art Museum (Beijing, China), the Tartu Art Museum (Estonia) and in private collections in Russia and abroad.

Solo Exhibitions:
1986 – Museum of Underground Art, Jersey City, USA
1989 – Eduard Nakhamkin Gallery, New York, USA
1992 – Manezh Central Exhibition Hall, St Petersburg, Russia
1992 – Galerie Marie-Therese Cauchin, Paris, France
1996 – State Hermitage, St Petersburg, Russia
1998 – Art Museum, Tartu, Estonia
1999 – Svetlana Eberhart Gallery, Cologne, Germany
2000 – Museum of Modern Art (Moscow, Russia)
2001 – International Federation of Artists, St Petersburg, Russia

Presentation on 20th November 2003       

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