Painting / Sculpture
Mikhail Zvyagin is a well-known Russian artist whose works are displayed in the museums and at the other cultural sites throughout the world. Born in Leningrad (St. Petersburg) Mikhail was just 10 years old when Hitler invaded USSR and blockaded his native city for 872 days. The siege left an unforgettable impression on the artist, which will be reflected in his oeuvre. For more than half a century of intensive creative activity, Zvyagin worked in almost all the genres of painting, from still life to portrait, from landscape to animal images. He widely experimented with the color and style, from gloomy realism of industrial landscape to the picturesque language of metaphorical and abstract art. His paintings depicting the images of violence and bacchanalia of triumphant and intoxicated monsters especially striking. One of the most important works in the artist’s own view was Babiy Yar 1981-1985, commemorating the infamous atrocity committed by the Nazis in Kyiv, Ukraine in 1941, killing over 33 thousand Jewish people.
At the beginning of the 21st century, Zvyagin turned to sculpture and repeated a number of his pictorial scenes in bronze, including the “Blockade Madonna”, the work commemorating the 65th anniversary of lifting the Leningrad blockade, which was presented to the city of St. Petersburg in 2001. His monument to the Russian poet Alexander Pushkin is at the Russian Consulate in New York, and his sculpture “Grief”, dedicated to the victims of the Leningrad blockade was donated to the German town of Gorish by Dmitriy Shostakovich’s widow, Irina.
The works of Mikhail Zviagin were exhibited at the numerous museums, including Russian Museum and Hermitage in St. Petersburg, Russia, The Wall Museum in Berlin, Germany, museums in Omsk, Tula, Voronezh, Smolensk, and other Russian cities. His paintings are in the permanent collection at Zimmerli Art Museum, New Jersey, USA. The most recent solo exhibition was held by the Erata Museum, St. Petersburg from December 2018 through February 2019.