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 Ernst Neizvestny


Born:   April 9, 1925

Sculptor

      

The greatest enemy of an artist is an advisor, even a well-wishing one. He deprives the artist of his free will Ernst Neizvestny says.

As far back as in 1962 Nikita Khrushchev, Chairman of the Council of Ministers of the USSR visited an art exhibition in Manege where he flung invectives at contemporary art. What for are you disfiguring Soviet people!? shouted Khrushchev. Only one person dared to object to him. It was Ernst Neizvestny, a man of selfless courage, who had raised a platoon to an attack under heavy fire in 1945.

Neizvestny returned that he had a right to see the world in the way he wanted to. This incurred the officials curses on the sculptor. However, when Khrushchev died his family ordered the tombstone monument to Ernst Neizvestny and he created an austere modern-style sculpture. The monument reflecting the inner drama of Khrushchev ruling can be seen at Novodevichiy Cemetery.

Ernst Neizvestny working on the Ernst Iosifovich Neizvestny was born on April 9, 1925 in Sverdlovsk (Yekaterinburg) city. After winning a national competition he attended a school for artistically gifted children till 1942. In 1943 Ernst graduated from a military school. He was badly wounded in Austria before the very end of the war, was announced perished and posthumously conferred on the Order Red Star for heroism. In 1945-46 he taught drawing at Suvorov Institute in Sverdlovsk. Afterwards he studied at the Academy of Arts in Riga, Latvia, and later at the Moscow Surikov Art Institute and at the same time he studied philosophy at the Moscow State University. Ernst Neizvestny became a laureate of the 4th International festival of youth and students in Moscow, and the winner of the All-Union competition for creation of the monument of Victory in the Great Patriotic War.

Nikita Khrushchevs tombstone at Novodevechiy Cemetery, Moscow, Russia. From 1977 Ernst Iosifovich lived and worked in New York. He taught at Columbia and Harvard Universities. In 1983 he was selected to be a professor of humane studies of Oregon University. A Member of Swedish Royal Academy of Sciences, European Academy of Arts, Sciences and the Humanities in Paris and Academy of Arts and Sciences in New York. Neizvestny is the author of Space, Time, and Synthesis in Art: Essays on Art Literature, and Philosophy published in the United States, Canada, and England in 1990.

Orpheus Statuette (TEFI Award) Sculptor Ernst Neizvestny has created a number of large fundamental compositions. His noted monumental works include the monument to Friendship of Peoples (aka Lotus Flower) at the Aswan High Dam in Egypt (1971), decorative relieves for the Electronics Institute in Zelenograd town near Moscow (1974) and the facade for former headquarters of Central Committee of Communist Party in Ashkhabad, Turkmenia. In 1995 Ernst created the Orpheus statuette for the popular national TEFI TV-contest. Ernst NeizvestnyThe memorial to GULAG victims in Magadan was made according to Neizvestnys design in 1996, and in the same year Neizvestny got the Government Award. His composition Rebirth appeared in Moscow in 2000, and in 2003 Neizvestny presented his monument In Memory of Kuzbass Miners to Kemerovo city. The latest monumental work by Ernst Neizvestny The Tree of Life was opened in the atrium of the bridge Bagration, Moscow, in October 2004.

When asked You visit Russia rather often, but always return to America. Why? Arent they happy to have you here, in the historic homeland? the master of sculpture answers: No, its just because in the States Im working easier. America has turned close to me with its scope and rhythm.

The official site of Ernst Neizvestny: www.enstudio.com

Sources:

    www.museum.kemcity.ru
    www.seva.ru
    www.peoples.ru
    www.newizv.ru

Vera Ivanova and Mikhail Manykin


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