MOSCOW.- The exhibition presents to the public one of the largest collections of contemporary Russian art the collection of Viktor Bondarenko, collector, patron of arts, honorary member of the Russian Academy of Arts, and member of the State Tretyakov Gallery Council of Trustees. The display includes approximately 100 works by artists belonging to several generations.
The main idea of the exhibition is to reflect the history of contemporary art through the prism of a private collection. Amongst the artists presented in the collection are all prominent figures of contemporary Russian art, including Oskar Rabin, Vladimir Nemukhin, Mikhail Shwarzman, Erik Bulatov, Ilya Kabakov, Ernst Neizvestny, Dmitry Gutov, Alexander Kosolapov, Oleg Kulik, and many others. However, Bondarenkos range of interests is not confined to celebrities only. His collection encompasses a wide range of contemporary art, its various trends, spheres, and media. It includes small-scale paintings by other art artists of various trends, key pictures and objects by masters who make up the nucleus of the Moscow conceptual school, works by classics of Sots-Art, Post-Modernist painting and photo-realism, as well as works by leading figures of the post-Soviet period. Moreover, Bondarenko follows the current artistic process with enthusiasm and supports the work of promising young authors.
Viktor Bondarenkos view is particularly interesting because he is the most influential collector of icons, being, at the same time, production director of projects in the sphere of the newest visual art technologies.
Works from the collection of Viktor Bondarenko have been shown repeatedly in group and solo exhibitions of contemporary art, but the collection has never been exhibited in the full scale.
The catalogue was prepared for this exhibition, as well as a book on the history of contemporary Russian art, based on the collection of Viktor Bondarenko.
An international scientific conference, dedicated to the academic research of the issues in contemporary Russian art, is also timed to the exhibition. The aim of the conference is to discuss a wide range of issues in contemporary Russian art and its interaction with international practice. A conference of such type is a chance to bring together academic scientists from various institutions and cities, museum researchers, authoritative critics and curators, foreign specialists in Russian art, and the young generation of scientists.
Parallel to the display at Gogolevsky Boulevard, the third exhibition of Viktor Bondarenkos collection of icons entitled Everything Remains with the People will be on view in the Andrey Rublev Central Museum of Ancient Russian Culture and Art.
Viktor Alexandrovich Bondarenko was born on April 22, 1950 in Kharkov. He is a publisher, a businessman, a collector, a patron of arts, the founder of Passport International and Military Parade publishing houses. He organised the exhibition 20th Century Russian Art: The Avant-Garde Years, the Glasnost Years in the Museum of Nassau County (New York, USA, 1992; in collaboration with the Russian Cultural Foundation). He is one of the curators and the main sponsor of the exhibition The World of Sensitive Objects in the Pictures of the End of the 20th Century in the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts (Moscow, 1997). Viktor Bondarenko owns one of the best Russian collections of Orthodox icons. He organised several outstanding exhibitions of Russian icons (It is by the Fruit that the Tree is Known, 2003, State Tretyakov Gallery; Icon Painting of the Romanov Dynasty Epoch, 2008, the State Tretyakov Gallery) and contemporary art including the much talked-of DEISIS project in the State Tretyakov Gallery (2004). He lives and works in Moscow.