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Galyna Moskvitina
 'The Heart Of The Matter'
24 November - 19 December 2014

High Resolution

With another year over and the next already filling up with plans, we are inevitably drawn to the idea of self-improvement and the chance to turn over a new leaf. Hay Hill Gallery’s December show contrasts the chaos and materialism of the festive season with The Heart of the Matter- a collection of meditative paintings by artist Galyna Moskvitina. As we sink under our accumulating things, the simplicity and stillness of her work questions what it is that we really long for- the longing described by T. S. Eliot as a need for ‘further union, a deep communion’.

Anthony de Mello wrote that we ‘are born asleep. Live asleep and die asleep… We never wake up. That is what spirituality is about: waking up.’ Like sleepwalkers, we are going through our daily rituals, never quite catching up, hanging on by a thread, suffering the anxious feelings of being. Unsure of ourselves and our surroundings, we build up layers to protect ourselves but the cotton-wool zone quickly breeds apathy and a disconnection with the present moment. The lights are on but no one’s home.

Drawing patterns, forming habitual ritual, automatically reacting- we fall into autopilot, repeating the same refrain like a scratched record. The computer is a false window to the world as we pinball between Facebook and Twitter and email. Google and Wikipedia are the go-to brains of choice; ebay and Starbucks consume our wages; television and pub are the blinkered respite. In the attempt to claw back some semblance of control, great efforts are made to maintain a Dry January, the No-Carbs-Before-Marbs bikini diet, and Sober October- before it all implodes at the Christmas party, adding insult to injury with New Year just a week later. No wonder you’re exhausted- and beginning to wonder if you’ve completely missed the point of it all.

Recent studies have found that alongside the logical and emotional capacities of a human brain, exists an area solely dedicated to spiritual experience. At first, these ideas can seem outdated to our fast paced western culture; but the search for meaning, value and purpose is universally relevant- and for the sake of the whole being, spirituality should not be overlooked but must be considered an essential part of life.

The paintings in themselves are mouthpieces for one artist’s spiritual journey; yet the shimmering canvases are also designed to resonate with an individual. Dependent on different shades of light from morning until evening, each work has potential to communicate something unique to the spectator. Having such an encounter in a London gallery may seem strange, but by resolving to stop, stand and really notice for once, you make space to come up for air. You will finally respond, as one wide awake.


'By observing the world, a person can observe the way Light operates through them; with a conscious effort they can try to harness this Light to improve their own lives.' Galyna Moskvitina

Hay Hill Gallery is delighted to present this exhibition of powerfully spiritual works by noted Ukrainian artist Galyna Moskvitina. Featuring the Laternative Realism style founded by the artist herself, The Heart of the Matter is the radiant result of her 15 year immersion into Eastern Philosophy, and explores representations of a higher state as taught by George Gurdjieff.

As one of the best graphic artists in the Ukraine, Moskvitina was the first to illustrate Bulgakov's literary masterpiece The Master and Margarita, and perhaps his magical realism was an inspiration for her later works. Her illustrations have appeared in nearly 70 books published in the former Soviet Union, and her public work received high acclaim in 1991 with solo exhibitions in the Ukraine and abroad. She later withdrew from the art world to explore her own spiritual path, returning over a decade afterwards with a series of remarkable Svetangs ('Light anchors'). These aesthetically beautiful works are balanced perfectly between the visible and invisible, lending us her visions of heightened awareness.

‘Real art should reveal the higher essence of existence, express the deepest truths of the spirit, carry love and give wings to the soul- otherwise, why would people need it?’ Galyna Moskvitina

Inspired by the teachings of Gurdjieff, this ‘authentic artist’ is deliberate in her approach, consciously creating art designed to resonate deeply with the spectator. Whatever your personal take on spirituality, the works lend themselves flawlessly to a meditative state; the colours are soft, with the pastel tones of prisms or soap bubbles. As bright as the Christmas lights of Oxford Street, the walls of Hay Hill Gallery are illuminated with the idea that by peeling back the dulling layers of material stuff and noise, the true centre will be found. Our rushed approach can be altered by these visual prompts: in slowing down to become aware of the present, our concept of time will be stretched out like elastic.

The idea of approaching time differently is encoded within these paintings, with each of the ‘Sparkle Series’ named to indicate the time of day that they will have their full impact. Like tuning forks they strike a silvery note, aligning every listener with ‘the heart of the matter’. Though the maelstrom of shoppers and glowing taillights of rush hour continues to busily hum round Marylebone, this is an unexpectedly beautiful space to catch your breath- and just be still for a little while.

press release (pdf)

The exhibition is held alongside a sculpture collection which features works by Oleg Prokofiev, Eleanor Cardozo, Nicola Godden, Richard L.Minns, Andy Cheese, Jamie McCartney, Ian Edwards, Gianfranco Meggiato, Massimiliano Cacchiarelli Principi, and Anne Tanner.

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