The new exhibition by the In artibus foundation reveals some 80 paintings by Nikolay Romadin among which there are his iconic highly detailed forest landscapes praising the might of the Russian nature as well as his earlier works from the 1930s which verge into modernism aesthetics.
Nikolay Romadin enjoyed good fortune of an artistic life. He was a contemporary of Alexander Deineka and Yuri Pimenov, Andrey Goncharov and George Nyssky, a student of Vkhutemas, a student of Drevin and Falk; he lived a long life, received all the awards and all the titles a Soviet artist should receive. During his lifetime, his works were purchased by the largest museums in Russia, but he was not particularly prone to compromise: it was that Romadin’s creative passions and temperament happily coincided with the official Soviet ideology’s approach to patriotism.
The artist first attracts attention in 1938, when Igor Grabar, chairman of the MOSSKh procurement committee says (according to Romadin himself): “We are witnessing the birth of the Russian artist, we must buy everything!” At the same time he met Mikhail Nesterov, which was fateful for Romadin’s artistic career. Afterwards he wrote in his diary: “I am Russian and must devote myself to Russia, and not to an amorphous humanity.” In 1946 he received the Stalin Prize for a series of landscapes “Volga – the Russian River”, and was awarded the unspoken title of the master of the Russian epic landscape.
From the time he met Mikhail Nesterov, Romadin has been under his strong moral influence throughout his life. During his creative career, he painted many landscapes, mainly in central Russia.
The only surviving work of Romadin in the genre of Soviet thematic painting is “The Party. Story of the Pilot ”(1939) which is also presented at the exhibition, while all other works of this kind were destroyed by the artist himself at the turn of the 30-40s. Visitors can also have a look at several expressive, vividly experimental works that have never been exhibited before.