Konstantin Grachev and Ekaterina Gracheva. Looking at Things
Works by Konstantin Grachev, at first glance, match up to the literal meaning of the idiom, which was chosen as the title of the exhibition
Works by Konstantin Grachev, at first glance, match up to the literal meaning of the idiom, which was chosen as the title of the exhibition. His still-lifes are certainly tangible projections of the artist's careful look at things in a literal, physical sense of the word. Grachev paints it from nature, carefully selecting and composing the objects. However, contrary to the laws of the genre, there is no sense of intimacy in his still-lifes. It is mostly large-scale works with an energetic, kind-a-poster vibration.
Konstantin Grachev, using the language of Soviet art in the conversation about the Russian idea (people, nature, history), shows us that this language operates today as such a "high adverb", and we are able to perceive it without irony and sarcasm, in despite of all the twists in the history.
Desiring to clearly manifest his vision, his "view of things", the artist eliminates from the pictures that illustrate the idea, the carrier of this idea. Ideas are immaterial and immortal, but their heroes are not. Absence of a person is an inherent characteristic of almost any still-life, but the fact is that things in Grachev's still-lifes in the first place refer to the person and talk about him, in the same time
"Looking at things," by Ekaterina Gracheva in contrast to the works of Konstantin is inextricably linked to its heroes. Their views are either directed into the void, either were fixed on what is missing in the reality on the canvas. If things in the still-lifes of Konstantin are short on of people, in the paintings of Ekaterina people are yearning for their life-saving things.
Combining portraits, urban landscapes and genre painting, practicing her cliches and variously combining them, Ekaterina Gracheva creates her own language of painting, allowing her to talk about things invisible to the eye, but absolutely real for the modern people. These things are an alienation and loneliness, problems of self-perception and sense of life as a dream and a stream of repeated images. At the same time, the artist does not speculate on a fertile topic of inner peace and does not seek to shock the viewer by absurd images and schemes.
We must say that, and Konstantin, and Ekaterina are characterized by serious approach to chosen topics and problems in art. It is possible that both artists, despite the difference in psychology and aspirations, are now busy by the same - namely, an attempt to adapt well assimilated aesthetic canon of its own internal imperatives, most effectively apply it to situations of unlimited freedom, which takes place in contemporary art. In this case, the sensitivity displayed by the artists, when they work with themes and genres, demonstrates an awareness of this freedom and a proper understanding of its meaning: to reveal yourself and to remain yourself.