An Alexis Gritchenko exibition in Paris

A. Gritchenko. St. Jacques Tower. 1924

Michel Lievre speaking

In the time of French Spring in Ukraine, a small but significant event was taking place in the capital of France — it was an exhibition of a Ukrainian avant-garde painter, art critic and icon scholar Alexis Gritchenko (1883-1977), born in Krolevets town (now in Sumy oblast), educated in Kyiv, an active participant of avant-garde movement in Moscow, who lived and studied in France since 1920-ies.

During the vernisage

The exhibition featured 36 paintings and graphic works the artist had created in his first years of immigration, which now belong to private collections. This early period is considered the most original in the Gritchenko's heritage: it was the time that he combined avant-garde approaches with the icon language and imagery. The works of this talented and versatile artist is, unfortunately, little studied and almost unknown to public.

So the more precious is the contribution of the collectors who had been gathering Gritchenko's art and biographical facts, little by little, for many years, trusting only to their own artistic taste.

The exhibition was organized by Marina and Michel Lievre, supported by Danylo Sztul and Sophia Wirsta. In the 17th arrondissement of Paris, there was a two-night vernisage «Dynamocolour» («Tsvetodinamos»), as the artist himself named it. Gritchenko said:
«Paint and colour are the main face of our ideas, the magic wand inspiring the artist, giving him impulse, stimulus and impetus to create».

A. Gritchenko. In the Port of Istanbul. 1920

A. Gritchenko. Crete. 1923

Мaryna and Michel Lièvre

with Jean-Claude Marcadé

Constantinople watercolours by A. Gritchenko. 1919-1921

During those two nights the guests could get acquainted with the French version of Vita Susak's book "Ukrainian Artists of Paris. 1900-1939" and to communicate with the author. A great background to the Gritchenko art and talks about it was made by piano tunes Miron Mitrovitch played. The vernisage was finished by the Ukrainian folk songs the painter himself liked to sing. One could not help noticing the sincerity and generous wish of the hosts to share the enjoyment of the masterpieces they had found and cherished, to make people acquainted with the works of a remarkable artist.

A. Gritchenko. Still life. 1921

A. Gritchenko. A Southern Landscape. Late 1920-ies

A. Gritchenko. Still life. Late 1920-ies

A. Gritchenko. Place Vendôme. 1924

Text by Vita Susak; pictures by Natalia Alyoshyna.

http://www.prostir.museum/ua/post/30181

Prostir.museum
By Tanya Grishchenko | May 2, 2013 11h43 |

On Friday, 12th of April 2013, from 7 p.m. to the midnight, the exhibition gathered mostly people of the Ukrainian community in France. Among them were Iryna Dmytryshyn, the head of Ukrainian studies in National Institute for Oriental Languages and Civilizations (INALCO); Yaroslav Yosipishine , the head of S. Petlioura Library in Paris, Natalia Pasternak, the head of Representative Committee of Ukrainian Community in France (CRCUF), as well as representative of Byzantine-rite Catholic Church exarchate in France Mykhaylo Plishka. The guests that night also were Anna Canter, the vice-president of "Senlis – Kyiv – Pechersk" society; Victoria Delinger, a UNESCO official; Nadia Myhal,

the president of Association of Ukrainian Women in France and the head of Ukrainian School at St. Volodymyr the Great church in Paris. Famous Ukrainian artists Volodymyr Makarenko and Antin Solomuha came to their predecessor: they are now living and creating in the capital of France. Jean-Claude Мarcade, a well-known scholar of Ukrainian and Russian avant-garde, who is familiar with Gritchenko's art and highly appreciated his Constantinople watercolours, visited the event on his way to Kyiv. Michel Lievre spoke to the guests. Sincerely admiring the works of the artist, he called the everyone to support the idea to make a major exhibition of Gritchenko in the museums of Kyiv, Moscow and Paris.

The next night, on Saturday 13 April, the exhibition gathered the art world professionals of the French capital – the representatives of auction houses (Boisgirard, Chochon-Barré,…), gallerists (galleries Lelia Mordosh, Massimo di Veroli, Russian world", Galerie AB in Paris, AKTIS (London), Marek (Warsaw), APART 85 Gallery of San Francisco), collectors who came спеціально to this event from Brussel, London, Kyiv and Moscow. In the view of Natalia Kochetkova, the representative of London gallery AKTIS: "Among the works shown, I was impressed by a wide range of paints the artist used: from heartfelt and delicate watercolours to saturated, vivid and dynamic oils on canvas. The vernisage took place in a warm and creative atmosphere, and I would like to

give special thanks to the organizers of the event, Maryna and Michel Lievre, for their enthusiasm and hard work to gather this unique collection of a brilliant representative of Paris school – Alexis Gritchenko".

During those two nights the guests could get acquainted with the French version of Vita Susak's book "Ukrainian Artists of Paris. 1900-1939" and to communicate with the author. A great background to the Gritchenko art and talks about it was made by piano tunes Miron Mitrovitch played. The vernisage was finished by the Ukrainian folk songs the painter himself liked to sing. One could not help noticing the sincerity and generous wish of the hosts to share the enjoyment of the masterpieces they had found and cherished, to make people acquainted with the works of a remarkable artist.

Singing

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