"It happened what we have been waiting for a long time, we are opening an exhibition of an absolutely legendary collection," emphasized the director of the Pushkin Museum Marina Loshak.
What is so unique in the museum, which only last year celebrated its fiftieth anniversary and so inspired the sophisticated art critic? The secret of the success of the collection and the surprise of the sophisticated Moscow public in the person and deeds of the founder is Igor Savitsky. The man who is often called the "Central Asian Tretyakov" collected a huge and unique collection of contemporary art - all this in the face of severe Stalinist and "bulldozer" Khrushchev times, times of dictatorship of socialist realism.
Igor Savitsky exported and thus often simply saved the unique paintings, criticized by Khrushchev and the artists from all over the Soviet Union who were persecuted by the Soviet officials.
Even the location of the museum - in Karakalpakstan, in Nukus, is not accidental - only there the functionaries, responsible for culture, allowed to assemble a unique collection - neither for Tashkent, nor especially for Moscow, it did not fit.
However, modern officials, responsible for culture, are cultural people and understand the value of the collection and the museum - that is why the exposition was sent from Uzbekistan to Russia for the first time.
As the Minister of Culture of Uzbekistan stated, the very fact of the arrival of the exhibition in Moscow is unique. This is the first exhibition from the Savitsky Museum in Russia on the background of the visit to Moscow by Shavkat Mirziyoyev - a good political sign. Political significance of the exhibition from the Nukus collection was also noted by the special representative of the President of the Russian Federation Mikhail Shvydkoy in a conversation with the correspondent of “Sputnik Uzbekistan”.
"This collection, which shows that the avant-garde is internally, deeply connected with traditional art ... The most important thing is that everyone knew about the Nukus exhibition, everyone understood how significant and important it is. But for many years it was not given to Russia and the fact that it turned out today in Russia is a fact not only cultural, but also political," Shvydkoy stressed.
However, as the main curator of the museum Valentina Sycheva told the Sputnik correspondent to Uzbekistan, part of the unique collection to Moscow was released in the museum easily.
"We are very happy, because Savitsky, if he was alive, would be happy that the exhibition hold in Moscow. It is true that people come to us, Nukus from all over the world and we are happy to show such a beautiful collection in the very center of the capital of Russia," Sycheva noted.
The exhibition will stay in Moscow for slightly more than a month - visitors will be able to see the exhibits from April 7, and on May 10 the collection will return to Uzbekistan.
Earlier it was reported that the exposition will be visited by the presidents of Uzbekistan and Russia.
According to the special representative of the President of the Russian Federation Mikhail Shvydkoy, this collection was first and for the last time exhibited in Moscow in a significant amount only in 1968-69 - two years after the opening of the museum in Nukus - and then its unprecedented tour of the cities of the former Soviet Union.
"Over the past quarter century, leading Russian museums have repeatedly turned to colleagues from Nukus with a proposal to display in their walls some of the exhibits of the legendary collection, but they never received consent. Regardless of the political relations between the countries, the reluctance to export one of the best collections of the Russian and Uzbek avant-garde of the 1920s-1930s to Russia along with the masterpieces of the Karakalpak folk art and truly great discoveries made during the Khorezm archaeological and ethnographic expedition under the guidance of Professor S.P. Tolstov remained unchanged. Paradoxically, our colleagues from Uzbekistan did not have the confidence that the collected works would be returned. That is why the opening of the museum exposition from Nukus in the Pushkin Museum is not just an important cultural event, but also a political gesture that testifies to a new page in the interstate ties between Russia and Uzbekistan.
Strangely enough, colleagues from Uzbekistan were not sure that the collected works will return. It was opened in 1966 on the initiative of Igor Vitalievich Savitsky, the art museum in Nukus not by chance bears the name of its first director. It was his unique scientific, creative and collecting activities that turned the museum into the capital of the Karakalpak ASSR into one of the most famous treasuries not only in Uzbekistan, but throughout Central Asia. Here, artifacts are kept from the earliest archeology to the great art of the twentieth century. Each part of the collection - the treasures of ancient Khorezm, the applied art of Karakalpakstan and the Soviet avant-garde have their admirers. But most researchers believe that the Museum. I.V. Savitsky acquired his high reputation, above all, because of the collection of Soviet - Russian and Uzbek - avant-garde, which made Nukus one of the centers of attraction of the world's leading experts.
Due to its historical ignorance, I for a long time believed that the collection of this museum in its own way was formed by Soviet political and art censors of the
30-50s of the last century, having sent to the country, far from the Soviet capital, domestic masterpieces that do not fit into the state notions of socialist realism. In a sense, it was, but only partly. No one sent wagons to Karakalpakia with Soviet "degenerative art". In Uzbekistan from Moscow and St. Petersburg in the pre-war and war years came artists associated with modern artistic trends - the miraculous and man-made beauty of this ancient land gave a new impetus to their creativity. As well as meetings with colleagues from Tashkent, Samarkand, Bukhara, which in the 1920s and 1930s went their own unique ways, combining traditional Orientalism with artistic innovation. Far from Moscow, where the aesthetic dictatorship of socialist realism was much tougher, they breathed much more freely. At least they felt more creative here.
Uzbek avant-gardists had to survive due to the decorative works that adorned the buildings after the war. R. Falk, N. Ulyanov, V. Rozhdestvensky discovered the art of the "Turkestan avant-garde", and the remarkable Uzbek masters - A. Volkov,
U. Tansykbaev, N. Karakhan, A. Nikolaev (Usto Mumin), V. Ufimtsev and others, who created their own artistic language, The possibility of creative communication with the masters of the "Jack of Diamonds". It was during the war I. Savitsky in Samarkand met R. Falk and took painting lessons from N. Ulyanov. He perfectly understood the great power of their creativity, as well as the fact that the post-war Soviet reality, in which the irreconcilable struggle with the "homeless cosmopolites" began, does not leave many of his teachers a chance to survive. Yes, and he did not accidentally agreed in 1950 to become a permanent artist of the Khorezm archaeological and ethnographic expedition, where he worked until
1957 year. The fate of the representatives of the "Turkestan avant-garde" was also very difficult in these years. Most of their work did not appear at the exhibitions of those years - they were acquired by I. Savitsky for the museum in Nukus already in the second half of the 60s.
Uzbek avant-gardists had to survive at the expense of applied decorative works that adorned new buildings in Tashkent after the war. They are preserved, for example, in the restored building of the Opera and Ballet Theater named after Alisher Navoi. It so happened that on the last International Theater Day, March 27, Anatoly Iksanov and I were in Tashkent on the affairs of the CIS Interstate Humanitarian Cooperation Fund. And again fell into the captivity of the endless charm of this city, destroyed for centuries by earthquakes and again revived by people for whom Tashkent is their destiny. And wherever we are - in the offices of Minister of Foreign Affairs A. Kamilov and Minister of Culture M. Muratov, in the new campus of the Institute of Art and Culture or in the modern building of the National Library - the interlocutors returned us to the event, which they expected no less than Muscovites. They perfectly understood that the exhibition from Nukus is not just an artistic event. However, modern political meanings will remain hidden for most of its visitors. And do not be sad about this, "- noted M. Shvydkoy.