Mykola Hlushchenko painting exhibition “Sunny Landscapes, Sunny Women” opens in the “Bakery”

Mykola Hlushchenko painting exhibition “Sunny Landscapes, Sunny Women” opens in the “Bakery”

An exhibition of works by the outstanding Ukrainian painter Mykola Hlushchenko (1901-1977) from the repository of the Ukraine Art Exhibitions Directorate opens on March 4, 2021 at 4:00 pm in the “Bakery”.

The words on the poster of the exhibition are taken from the short response of the Ukrainian writer Sofiia Yablonska about Hlushchenko personal exhibition, which took place in 1934 in Lviv. “Sunny landscapes, sunny women – we have so little of this sun, please breathe it…”, – she urged the audience. This old and seemingly accidental description best outlines the artist’s creative credo, a trait that distinguishes him from all other artists.

Journalists of our time often emphasize the fact that Hlushchenko was also a Soviet spy. To gain the reader’s attention, some try to create a vivid intrigue around the “Soviet James Bond from Ukraine”, others – on the contrary – a veil of mystery. And some do not mind casting a shadow on the artist’s independent creative personality and picturesque freedom: they say that when most artists were driven into the Procrustean bed of socialist realism, the authorities allowed creative freedom to the chosen ones.

Looking at the long creative path of M. Hlushchenko, we can draw an indisputable conclusion: he was first and foremost an artist, a bright and unique creative personality. And this was and is the main reason for the interest of spectators, collectors, art critics in Ukraine and abroad. This interest accompanied the artist both in the Berlin period (1919-1925) and in France (1925-1936), where he became one of the most prominent representatives of École de Paris, and then in Ukraine, where he returned forever in 1944.

This exhibition presents works by M. Hlushchenko of the 1950s – 1970s from the stock collection of the Ukraine Art Exhibitions Directorate. The history of this collection is also interesting and revealing, both for understanding the creative practice of the artist and the nature of his art in general.

After Hlushchenko death in 1977, a huge number of works were discovered in his workshop. Most of them were transferred to Ukrainian museums, a certain number remained in the Directorate.

Dozens of paintings, sketches and unfinished works eloquently testify to the artist’s method, or rather – to the absolute environment of creation, the endless creative process in which the artist was present continuously. In one of the interviews to the question “What attracts you the most in your work?” Hlushchenko replied: “The work itself, the creative process. I have to draw every day. As to breathe, walk, think… “