Fantasies out of the Inkpot
Erarta Museum presented an exhibition by the experimenter artist Evgeniy Krylov – a journey into the mysterious ‘yonder . . .’
Stories born out of a grease spot or a coffee blot
Touchingly comic beings displaying a variety of natural colours and shapes
A look at ordinary objects through the magic prism
Evgeniy Krylov never ceases to experiment with materials and techniques. Describing his creative practice, he uses just one word – the evocative ‘yonder . . . ’ – thus emphasising the irreality of his works. This adverb points to some mysterious place, not unlike the wondrous land of blossoming lemon groves mentioned in Goethe’s song. However, it might also indicate a dark cell of the subconscious swarming with ghostly apparitions. Whatever the case, it refers to a duality of worlds. It is present not only in the artist’s oeuvre, but also in his life. Living between Hanover and St. Petersburg, he is alternately preoccupied with the issues of urban planning while working on sculptures and objects, with his own painting projects, and with purely contemplative experiments involving old postcards, ink, and watercolour.
Evgeniy Krylov’s imagery is incredibly diverse. It is quite literally emerging out of the very nature of materials: some pieces started from a dab of paint or a coffee stain, which, just like the magic log, suddenly spoke to the artist. Blots and stains are of particular interest to him as the subconscious origin of all things. This naïve, half-automatic method, combined with refined draughtsmanship and sense of composition, turned out to be astonishingly productive. And, lo and behold, the whimsical fairy-tale plants stepped out of the two-dimensional picture to materialise first in wax, and later in bronze.
The mothmen, alraunes, leprechauns, living roots, sylphs, and gnomes – figments of the popular lore relegated by the modern urban culture to the pages of fiction – make their presence felt in Krylov’s creations. Behind their somewhat comical appearance lies the artist’s reverent vision of the endless variety of natural colours and forms. He sees the simple things around us through his own magic prism that transfigures each and every one of them. Conceiving his Pinocchios, Bumblebee and Flower Sellers, Evgeniy Krylov intuitively masters the tools that once enabled the creation of the Universe.