Russian Artists in the First Period of Independent Latvia

Russian Artists in the First Period of Independent Latvia

The Russian people have a duty to feel and understand for themselves the significance of what has been created by their artists, in order to introduce the people of the West to Russian art

Yevgeny Klimov, artist

After the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia many Russian artists found refuge in Latvia, including the famous Nikolay Bogdanov-Belsky and Sergey Vinogradov. In emigration they, like a great many of their fellow countrymen, continued to actively pursue their occupations of creativity and teaching, developing traditions of Russian art.

For a large number of artists from Russia, Latvia had become a second home, where they were treated as high class masters. Thus, Alexandra Beltsova is a most distinguished artist of cubism and art-deco in Latvia and one of the founders of the national school of porcelain painting.

Another group of Russian artists in Latvia before the Second World War were local residents who were born in Latvia and received here an education in art. The works of Sergey Antonov, Yevgeny Klimov, Aleksey Yupatov and other Russian artists are remarkable for their being developed in a context of European art and at the same time keeping a Russian national originality. The creative career of Georgy Kruglov (1905-1984) started in the pre-war Latvia. He had graduated from Latvian Academy of Arts as ceramist and worked at Kuznetsov porcelain factory. His creations received by awards at expositions in Berlin (1933), Paris (1937), Brussels and Berlin (1938). From 1944 to 1974 taught at the Academy of Arts, was the chairman of the Department of decoration and design, pro-rector.

The contribution of Russian architects to the development of architecture in independent Latvia is also noteworthy. In the 1920’s and 1930’s such architects as Vladimir Shervinsky, Sergey Antonov, Pyotr Pavlov and Alexander Trofimov lived and worked here.

Created and amassed outside Bolshevik Russia, the unique artistic wealth gives us an idea of the ways in which Russian art in the 20th century could have developed.

Юрий Абызов. Латвийская ветвь российской эмиграции

Нина Лапидус. Вдали от родных берегов

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