Gelya Pisareva

Flor et Lavr gallery presents its third exhibition project, which continues to explore Russian sculpture of the 20th and early 21st centuries intending to define its standing in modern art. The exhibition of Gelya Pisareva, St. Petersburg sculptor, painter and graphic artist is called ”Roots.”

Both art and wooden sculpture of Galina Pisareva, or Gelya, as she prefers to be called, emanate a special warmth, which is a unique feature of her works. Another reason why her art leaves no one indifferent - the author’s favorite topic has always been rural life, viewed by her attentive and poetic eye. Her paintings tell us about the vanishing scenery, the reality, which is slipping away—something that urban dwellers are not supposed to be familiar with, but it remains close to every one of us as some primal memory. It is no wonder - about a hundred years ago vast Russia was mainly the country of peasants. Almost everyone can trace peasant roots in their ancestry.

The theme of the hard life of a peasant woman does not make Gelya’s art tragic or dark, which is often the case with the Soviet “Severe School.” On the contrary, her works shine with happiness. To a great extent this is the effect of the lively and vibrant colours she uses. No matter, whether her colors are translucent and joyful or intense and decorative, her art always appeals to the viewer’s memory leaving a relatable and true impression.

The artist states: What would our country do without a woman? A woman is a goddess. She is everything: a mother, a grandmother, a tsarina, a young beauty… Paraskeva! I admire a woman. Women are Madonnas. Who keeps the house, a man? I think it is a woman. She raises children, cooks, washes and cleans … A woman is the head of the family. 

The art of Gelya Pisareva harmoniously combines the approaches which, as it seems, rarely complement each other: traditional “Realism School” of the Academy of Arts, passionate commitment to the bright and conventional idiom of folk art and the special manner, which refers us to different genres of art from impressionism and post-Impressionism to the “Severe School.” Addressing folk roots has not brought Gelya Pisareva to echoing naïve art, but without a doubt has helped her develop her own clearly recognizable artistic language, leaving the viewer with the impression of spontaneous, emotional art—understandable and unbiased.

Wooden sculpture has a special place in Gelya’s art. The images possessing multiple meanings seem to be the characters of a happy and peaceful child’s dream. Despite their seriousness and reserve, they bring out the most cheerful feelings, whether it is an icon-like composition “Nikolaos of Myra” or “Village”, where women carry houses of their heads, literally “holding the world.” 

The many-sided, timeless images, the feeling of tangibility and sustainability of the colorful and melodious world created by Gelya Pisareva – isn’t it the manifestation of hope, faith and love, that let the modern man find the fulcrum which real art is?

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