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Gennady Zubkov

Made in America: Before and After September 11th
 
 
Exhibition catalogue available from
zevs@robotek.ru or swashers@aol.com
 
 

National Gallery of Art, Washington DC, 2002, Mixed Media
Dimensions: height 78", width 118"

 
 

National Gallery of Art, Washington DC, 1999, Oil on canvas
Dimensions: height 31", width 39"

   
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       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 in America.
       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.

    Irina Karasik,
    Curator of Contemporary Art
    State Russian Museum.