24 december 1999—24 january 2000
Gennady Zubkov presented his new project that in fact is an exhibition of one painting. Its main object was a poppy flower that was isolated and presented in a multiple magnification as if it was seen through telescopic lens.
Gennady Zubkov was born in Perm in 1940. IN 1968 he has graduated from the art and graphic faculty of the A. I. Gertsen Leningrad State Pedagogical Institute. His work was greatly influenced by acquaintance with V. Sterligov and studying under his direction Impressionism, Cezannism, Cubism and cupola system. In 1976 - 1978 Gennady Zubkov was working out the lessons' methods on form and color problems that was founded on studying experience with V. Sterligov. Since 1986 he has begun his own pedagogical activity, he investigated painting culture problems with young artists. In 1995 Gennady Zubkov organized the group "Form + Color".
Gennady Zubkov took part in the first exhibitions of Leningrad non-official art in 1974-75 (the Gas Palace of Culture and the Nevsky Palace of Culture). He is an organizer and participant of the "Sterligov's group" main exhibitions in St. Petersburg, Vienna, New York and in other cities. The artist's works are in collections of the State Russian Museum, Pushkin State Fine Arts Museum, Museum of St. Petersburg History, Yaroslavl Art Museum and Reserve, in Norton Dodge collection (USA) as well as in many private collections in Russia, USA, Germany, France, Finland, Sweden, Switzerland, Italy, Greece, England and Holland. In the Marble Palace exhibition you can retrace all the life cycle of the plant. Every phase of this cycle is accentuated by painting it on a separate canvas. But the parts though handing on the image as a baton form the indivisible composition. Continuity of painting narration corresponds to continuity of life process.
The artists has not been afraid of old-fashioned associations that are usua l for "flower motive", but on the contrary he stimulated them by frankness of their showing. Fortune of a flower is similar to that of a man. Transience of "flower lifetime" that is intensified by combination of various stages in simultaneous imaging turns to be a warning for a man. It is a kind of "Mеmento mori". Maybe it is the main botany lesson.
The main theme continuing in the original herbaria - graphic commentaries - tells not only of life but also of painting. Subject of reflexion is old as our world - it is a form-building in art and in nature. In tradition connected with Russian Avant-garde nature was retreating in the face of form-creating will of an artist. Nature submitted to laws dictated by painting. In the Botanical Garden Gennady Zubkov realized that the very nature has a form-building potential. Poppy flower is a kind of perfect detail of natural architecture that is able to influence on surrounding by organizing it. Lesson of botany is to see this aura of natural geometry. The exhibition was organized with the Ludwig Museum cooperation.