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18 Dec 2010

Dubossarsky & Vinogradov: ON THE BLOCK 2 at Triumph Gallery, Moscow

Lady with a Little Dog, 2010, oil on canvas, 195x145
(c) Dubossarsky & Vinogradov

On the Block 2
Triumph Gallery


The exhibition runs until 31 December 2010. The gallery is open daily 1200-2200.

Ruth Addison

Triumph Gallery
1/4 Teatralny Proezd
109012 Moscow

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Vladimir Dubossarsky and Alexander Vinogradov
3-31 December 2010

Those diligent painters of the 19th century always had a sketchbook with them, in order to quickly capture any moment which appealed during a stroll. Dubossarsky and Vinogradov carry a camera as a means of 'making a plaster cast of our time, as we see it now'. An even, sunny light over a street on the outskirts of Moscow, maybe in Khimki, a bag with the D&G logo, green leaves - a painting so exact and slick that any object is skirted over with a quick glance, be it a car, a flowerbed, steps, a long-legged girl in a mini-skirt. With its scholarly conscientiousness, its academic mastery and its beautiful views, Dubossarsky and Vinogradov's realism is a comfortable form of still life. Without the artists' traditional affectations and false aestheticising (for the past ten years they have worked on a mocking, idealistic image of 'the beautiful people'), these new works are an attempt to find beauty and drama in the world around us. As Dubossarsky put it, 'Every new generation of artists tried to see the world in its own way, to get closer to it, for example Velazquez, the the minor Dutch painters, the Impressionists, pop-artists, Actionists. It's important that every person has their own vision before their eyes, not the internet, television, magazines. Our new project expresses a desire to go out in to reality, or at least a declaration of that intent. Our hope is that those who've seen our show will look around them and say 'Wow, that's Dubossarsky and Vinogradov!''.

Seven works from the new series were shown at Geneva's Galerie Charlotte Moser in March this year. The garages, the five-storey buildings and the petty annoyances of daily life were presented by the artists 'as an attempt to see the unusual in our reality'. On the Block 2 is a continuation not so much of the aforementioned series but of a major project, a new direction for Dubossarsky and Vinogradov. One of their aims is to rethink painting in its classical understanding, as a reflection of the world. The new works, minus the usual comic effect, seem to be so obvious that the traditional analytical approach and critical gaze of the artists no longer counts. Dubossarsky and Vinogradov are not at all worried. Rather than a simulacrum, they now wish to paint life itself, without fiction and ornamentation but in their familiar large format.

A 90-page, full-colour catalogue accompanies the exhibition.