The RAA President Zurab Tsereteli about the RAA

Zurab Tsereteli:

About the 250th Anniversary of the Russian Academy of Arts

“The 250th anniversary of the Russian Academy of Arts is a remarkable event for all of us, as the art is inseparable from  society. It is created by people and for the sake of people, so this jubilee is our common holiday. At the same time,  the Russian Academy of Arts and all those who work for the Academy should make the utmost of the opportunity to resolve problems not focused on for various reasons. Since its foundation, training and upbringing of young artists have been the Academy’s top priorities”.

About the Academy art school

“The most significant is that the Academy has managed to preserve Russian classical school of painting. Many of foremost avant-garde artists were the Academy graduates. It is important to understand, that it is the Academy that has influenced the maturing of their talent and introduced those striving for innovations to the culture of professional mastership. I do not believe in creative potential of artists who are not skillful in  graphic art. A few finely devised works can not constitute a creative biography. Recently, we have arranged an exhibition of the Academy’s alumni diploma works in France which was one more appreciation of the Russian school of art education.”


About renovation of traditions

“The Academy has a lot of teaching programs and methods worked out by its best teachers and practicing artists. The advantages of this basic system have been proved by time. Works by our graduates have won a world recognition. We receive regular requests from other countries to exchange experience, as well as offer opportunities for international students to be trained at the Academy art institutions. In order to move forward, the Academy must synthesize traditions and new ideas. Sometimes, timed progressive results come through even minor innovations”.


About teachers

“Much depends upon a teacher’s skills and personality. The teacher develops his student’s creativity and helps to penetrate the depth and mystery of art using his own teaching methods and approaches. The art institution is not a factory line fabricating mass production. Every artist is an individuality”.

About students 

“Students are open to innovations and teachers should cautiously and tactfully encourage and direct them without imposing their will. We are used to lesson and instruct young people but often forget to take care of them, to help them with their everyday problems. Young artists need our support and appreciation of their progress. Thus, we will provide students with an incentive to perfect themselves to become new Rokotov, Michelangelo, Picasso”.

About skills   

“Today, we are faced with a necessity to resolve an urgent problem of training specialists engaged in fabrication of sculptures. Annually, qualified young sculptors graduate from the Academy, but this profession has its own peculiarity. Few people think of how a sculpture is created. It is a labor-consuming process starting from a sculptor’s model to be enlarged and fabricated in the proper material and involving  such workers as moulders, casters, chasers and others.

     Earlier, there were colleges specializing in training  workers of the afore-mentioned skills. Nowadays, the number of such colleges has been greatly reduced that resulted in almost complete destruction of such system of workers’ education. This situation impedes the development of not only small sculpture, but also the monumental art”.

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