1987 - Exhibition Hall DK «Neva» (St. Petersburg), with the group «Island»
1988 - Exhibition Hall LOSH (St. Petersburg), with a group TEII
1988 - Gallery «Art-Harbor» (St. Petersburg). «From the informal to the restructuring of the arts»
1990 - International Center for Diaghilev, Marble Palace (St. Petersburg)
1990 - Gallery «Tegnerlungen», Stockholm, Sweden (1-Exhibition)
1991 - Commercial Center. J. Washington, Tokyo, Japan
1992 - Gallery «Tegnerlungen», Stockholm, Sweden (2-Exhibition)
1992 - State Museum of Ethnography (St. Petersburg). «PARA-REALISM»
2001 - Exhibition Hall at the Moscow Central Library District (St. Petersburg). «Soul plus color»
2004 - Exhibition at the Gallery «AstroSoft» (St. Petersburg). Watercolor collages and graphics.
The works are in private Collection: Russia, Britain, Germany, Latvia, Finland, France, USA and Japan. Information about the work - in the electronic catalog of Russia, Britain, Germany, Latvia, Finland, France, Directory - «INTERFERENCE», The Art of West Berlin 1960-1990 he was. Center Art SP Diaghilev, publishing «Spiritis» Riga 1992.
E. Zakharchenko. Leap to freedom. The newspaper «Nevskiy Herald». January 17, 1992.
The exhibition charts the Petersburg Alexey Poyaganova 6 September 2004. The newspaper group «Astrosoft» № 7, 2004
World of Dragonlance (Forum). Tvorchostvo Alexei Poyaganova. Gift ovrazhnogo dwarves. 29-05-2006.
Festivals and Exhibitions. «Soul plus color»: 22.05 - 5.06 Exhibition Hall at the Moscow Central Library District. Eugene Zhavoronkov, Nicolas Zverev, Michael Koryakin, Vadim Kurova, Alexei POYAGANOV. Paintings, drawings. The newspaper «All museums». May 18, 2001.
«Soul + color». Paintings, drawings. St. Petersburg Gazette number 89 (2479), May 19, 2001.
Julia Ivanova. Alchemy of Art. Neva News. August 2005.
Julia Ivanova. Insight Through Creative Work. Neva News. October 2005.
Julia Ivanova. Chronic Aliment: Creativity. Neva News. December 2005.
Vladimir Peshkov. Semiosfera underground. 2005.
Elena Gorlova. Alexei Poyaganova creative self-expression. article/38.htm. 2009
Alexey Poyaganov was born in 1950 in Gorky (now called Nizhny Novgorod) and graduated with honours from the Gorky Arts College in 1976, having attained a qualification in teaching art. However, he did everything in his power to avoid a career in teaching because he wanted simply to be an artist; or, rather, an artist-cartoonist, because he draws at lightning speed. Alexey came to St. Petersburg by pure chance. In 1978 he was on his way to Kamchatka, called by the unsoiled landscape with its beautiful geysers, and in passing he happened to stop in St. Petersburg. Many things about the city appealed to him: the atmosphere of the cultural capital, where life moved fast and bristled with expectation at every turn; the treasures of the Hermitage and the Russian Museum, which filled him with awe; the romanticism of an artist’s life in the Soviet times, when it was necessary to hide from the authorities and when underground exhibitions were overseen by the Committee of State Security; the artistic circle that gathered in the Centre of Contemporary Art at Pushkinskaya 10… All this drew Poyaganov tight into St Petersburg society, so much so that he decided not to leave and still lives here today. The way an artist views the world is always unusual; when he (or she) sees it, he is not simply a person, but an observer of people. In the constant flow of life Alexey is constantly presented with new faces which he subjects to his artistic operations; like a surgeon, he cuts off all superfluous details and creates the sharp edge of a face, deleting the ears and hair, to achieve the maximum expression. Poyaganov has been developing a series of masks since 2001 and it’s impossible to calculate how many masks he has already drawn, because in one painting there might be five or ten masks at the same time. It may sound grotesque, but the exaggerated features of the masks are so expressive that they overshadow the faces around them. The perception of life as a game came to Alexey in the years when he worked at Lenfilm as a stage designer. At the end of the 70s he succeeded in making films with the famous Russian film director Alexander Sokurov, but soon realised that he wanted to work not for film, but for himself. The artistic part of his soul begged for self-expression; he wanted to embody on paper the ideas which were boiling inside him. Poyaganov’s creative work involves the continual development of eternal themes such as Adam and Eve, Bible stories, angels, and Don Quixote. He also shows the eroticism of a woman’s body in his multiple nudes, and the beauty of a man’s body in his portraits of antique heroes like Samson, Hercules and Odysseus. His creative energy is very fierce. “When the creative urge attacks it is as if something bursts open inside me, and I draw a lot very quickly until I am completely exhausted,” admits the artist. “Then a new wave of inspiration comes and again I want to fly into my work, into my creative dream, forgetting about myself”. Since 1987 Poyaganov has been actively participating in exhibitions. These include an exhibition at the Dyagilev International Centre in the Marble Palace in 1990, and one in the St. Petersburg Museum of Ethnography in 1992, as well as exhibitions in Stockholm and Tokyo. Poyaganov’s works can be found in private collections in the USA, England, France, Finland, Japan, Greece, New Zealand, Denmark, Sweden and Russia.
The diversity of themes in the creative work of Poyaganov is amazing. At different periods of life he related to different subjects but he constantly returns to his favourite themes, the inexhaustible and main motifs of the Holy Writ, women, the man in the mask, angels and antiquity. Samson and Odysseus, Quixote and a sad Angel, biblical characters, beautiful ladies – they all are artistic creations of one demiurge, Alexey Poyaganov. Light, impetuous, inspired movements of a brush – an image exudes on the paper so fast and precisely that you involuntarily start believing in the sorcery of the artist. What gift does he possess? Sharp strokes, true lines immediately lie down on the sheet. There are no laboured revisions, no hundreds of corrections of form or detail. “I draw without any sketches, always laying down a clean copy the first time”, says Alexey Poyaganov. “Sometimes I’m so engrossed in my work, so captivated, that I can’t stop drawing. When an inspiration comes, I work, work and work a few days without rest, without sleep. So I create my series of works. Unless I’m happy with the result, I draw again and again, developing the same images and themes until I find the true embodiment”.
The style of Poyaganov is very peculiar. The artist has a special technique that employs water-colour, wax and a drawing-pen. First he sets rhythms and then he stains a wet paper with colours. At this stage “the images exude themselves, I only accentuate them,” says the artist. Impetuous strokes strike down on the paper with precision and speed. Ambiguous lines somewhere run, somewhere blur. Poyaganov rarely works with a finished plot and never works with sketches, for it is too boring. The conception is born itself in the process of the work.
There is always an extrasensory aspect to creative work. You can see it clearly in the drawings of Poyaganov where people are depicted with light around them, as if the eye of the artist could see their aura. Alexey confessed that he has always been stirred by the wish to see what is beneath the surface of the physical world and to grasp the essence. The artist states that “the moment of a creative peak you feel enlightened, this is when the insight is coming”.
Poyaganov can work for hours, painting and painting, sometimes doing a series of 12 works in one day, until he gets drained. However, after this exhaustion a new wave of inspiration always comes and again the artist wants “to fly into his work, into his creative dream, forgetting about himself”. “You and the paper, you live in this, in this creative process, you approach your dream, it’s a great elation,” says Alexey.
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