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Life-long journeys

24 February 2014

“Journeys of Natalia Zhilina” is the first large museum solo exhibition of not just a talented artist, but also a bright representative of the Leningrad underground art era.

Natalia Zhilina (1933–2005), a noble family child, survived the siege of Leningrad, graduated from Tavricheskiy lyceum of art and then started her work at the Graphic Art Centre. She was a frequent participator of so called "apartment exhibitions" and took part in the legendary non-conformist exhibition in the "Nevsky" Cultural Centre in the 70s. She was the muse of two outstanding members of Arefiev's circle: artist Vladimir Shagin and photographer Boris Smelov. She also became a mother of Dmitry Shagin, one of the leaders of the "Mitki" art group.

Dmitry Shagin described the chosen works as floriferous, colorful and brightly reflecting the author's love to the world. It is very symbolic that the exhibition takes place in Erarta, as Natalia Zhilina lived on Vasilevsky Island, not far from the museum building, and walked a lot in the surroundings.

Family and friends portraits as well as Leningrad-Petersburg landscapes make the base of the exhibition. The landscapes are created in a particular manner that connects large city spirit with a private view of a lonely street walker. The title of the exhibition has a double meaning: it is a journey both through the streets of native city and through the different artistic worlds of the author.

The exhibition runs until March 10.

about the exhibition
text by Olga Safroshina, photo by Vitaly Kolikov