Category: Opinion, Style

From G.ART Curator: “Nude and Beautiful”

There has never been a more problematic genre in the history of art than the nude. It was born out of a natural observation: naked hunters running along cave walls, the lush Venus of Willendorf, created almost 30,000 years ago, is beautiful in its own way. In some periods the naked body was glorified, in others it was transformed into a symbol of sinfulness. The XIX century was the age of mishaps – images of naked people in mythological and religious contexts were common everywhere, but simple townswomen were considered to be absolutely indecent! Francisco Goya’s painting Maha Nude was banned by the Inquisition, and a terrible scandal broke out in Paris because of Edouard Manet’s Olympia. In modernist art the human body has undergone many experiments, has revealed all its secrets and has been completely, it seems, legitimized – but it continues to provoke controversy, for example, in its gender aspect. Still, there is no genre more beautiful than the nude. Even today it poses difficult technical and aesthetic challenges to artists. Several artists working with nudes are presented on G.ART online platform. Each of them found their own technique, their own images.

Emin Asgerov‘s Natura combines lyricism and light irony. In the foreground is a luxurious silk bedspread, worthy of the prettiest oriental beauties. But it does not envelop an ideal woman with large hands, big feet and funny vivid, dreamy face. A woman whose naturalness is far more attractive than her cold ideal.

Zakir Akhmedov reveals the nude genre in both sculpture and painting: graceful lines, elongated bodies, thin arms. His people are more like dreams as if they wish to leave their corporeality, to turn into the wind, into streams of water. But in In Bed the artist allows the characters to remain in reality – to love each other, to wake up in one bed in the morning and to drink tart red wine.

Elitsa Baramova-Baramó‘s graphic nudes are like a Möbius strip, it is impossible to separate the inside from the outside. We see both the female silhouette and what is inside, in the soul. We see the double profile as if the face changes before our eyes. We see the hands turn into wings, as if in a magical fairy tale. Black and white, sadness and love, life and death – all before us in a single moment.

Pavlo Yarmolyk works in tempera on gesso. It is an iconographic technique, it has the spirit of the time, and there are allusions to old paintings. But at the same time, it seems as if the people depicted are looking back at us from the distant future. They are somewhat cold and detached, their proportions calculated, they have everything – the austerity of Egyptian statues and Raphaelian light.

Rafail Aliyev‘s painting also has a long tradition, the laconicism of old frescoes. He works boldly with large planes, but, thanks to the texture, makes them light as if glowing from within. His nude simultaneously resembles both a proud, robust ancient Greek goddess-Cora and a simple woman, accustomed to work, to the hot sun, and to the weight of heavy baskets filled with ripe apples.

Svetlana Malakhova works with the nude a lot and consistently, she is seriously passionate about the genre. Her classical education has given her an excellent realistic technique, but Svetlana doesn’t just paint from nature, she conceptualizes corporeality. Through the flesh (full and thin, at rest and in motion, young and not so young) she tries to understand what man is, what he is like, what he fears and what he desires.

Mikheil Balavadze calls his technique modern impressionism, where the impression of nature, the general image, is very important. In Eva’s work, this is the image of an ideal woman, a beauty that reaches cosmic proportions. There is nothing superfluous here except for the perfect human body and the stars. Eva is the Mother of all living things, the beginning of the race, and her inviting gesture means love.

Eduard Belsky‘s paintings are expressionistic and his work never seems to be set in stone, everything is in a process of formation. The young girl is depicted in profile, with touching shoulder blades, a thin neck, and a soft semi-face. But the red, loud-sounding background gives the young sitter significance and the work certain solemnity.