Exhibition of Graphic Works by the People’s Artist of Russia Lev Shepelev at the Russian Academy of Arts

Dates: January 31 – February 19, 2017
Venue: the Russian Academy of Arts
             21 Prechistenka street, Moscow

The Russian Academy of Arts presents an exhibition of the distinguished master of graphic art, People’s Artist of Russia, Academician of the Russian Academy of Arts Lev Shepelev (1937-2013). Timed to the 80th anniversary of the artist it features more than fifty graphic works created by him in various years.

Lev Shepelev was born on January 31, 1937 in Moscow. In 1961 he graduated fr om V. Surikov Moscow State Art Institute where he majored in graphics under the noted masters Evgeny Kibrik, Mickhail Matorin, Yury Reiner. The individual manner of painting, his original artistic vision were formed quite early. In the late 1950-s – early 1960-s Lev Shepelev created a series of works dedicated to Moscow, its old streets, historical monuments in combination with modern architecture,  which today can serve as documents of that time.  Since then, the theme of a city became one of the most important in the circle of his interests. The artist – urbanist, the artist of a cityscape is the genre in which the master used to work.  

His trips throughout Russia and other countries were constant incentives for new works. The artist drew not only on the immediate impression, but over the years started to generalize the nature trying to find the essence defining the integrity of the image. Lev Shepelev worked mostly in a rather rare and complicated technique of gouache, wh ere the colors and density are at the intersection of painting and graphics.

The motifs of St. Petersburg occupy a special place in the artist’s creative work. Lev Shepelev portrayed the city not only of gorgeous palaces and embankments, but also the courtyards of the city of Dostoevsky, industrial districts of St. Petersburg. The winter has refined the color palette of the master offering a variety of ashen, graphite, pearly shades that are characteristic for the northern capital. In his  last  years he created graphic sheets full of the atmosphere of contemplations and spirituality.

All the biography of Lev Shepelev has been  connected with his active teaching and  public activity. Since 1961, for forty years he taught at V. Surikov Moscow State Academy Art Institute,  in 1990-2001 headed the Institute as its Rector. In 2002 he set up a chair for Graphic Art at S. Stroganov Moscow Academy of Arts and Industry and headed it till 2013. Lev Shepelev was an Academician-Secretary of the Graphic Department of the Russian Academy of Arts and worked as Vice-President of the Russian Academy of Arts for education.

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