Gennady Zubkov has been to America three times. He gained most
of his impressions and materials during his last, long trip in 1999.
His travel diary was full of drawings, studies, sketches and notes.
The artist began to transfer some of the compositions into paintings.
Thus was born the idea of the series which the artist called "Made in USA."
This familiar phrase related in the first place to the works of art themelves,
marking them as having been created based on direct overseas impressions-made
Then Zubkov confirmed his position by inserting a concrete purpose
into his subject, one that has existed for centuries in Russia-the
Russian traveler abroad. "Made in USA" - is a sign of the American
national identity, of "American quality," of the American system of
values. The artist for sure drew on the meaning of such social symbols.
The subject he was interested in was not a region, not nature itself, but
a visual idea of a country.
Time passed…The artist worked with enthusiasm…. Then came September 11, 2001 - the
day that started the real, not just the calendar version of the twenty-first century
with an unprecedented global catastrophe.
Plunged into "the American subject," Zubkov could neither cancel his work,
nor continue it in the previous manner. Gradually a new concept developed.
Gennady Zubkov felt the need to relate the images still remaining in his memory
to the horrible realities and new impressions. The old name of the series was
now enriched with the words "Before and After," which designated a line between
the past and the present.
Curator of Contemporary Art
State Russian Museum.