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“Primavera” exhibition celebrating the 70th birth anniversary of Jury Gerasimenka-Zhyzneuski

Continuing the exhibition projects of the National Art Museum dedicated to the works of famous Belarusian artists,“Primavera” exhibition celebrating the 70th birth anniversary of Jury Gerasimenka-Zhyzneuski will open in the gallery of the new building on February 28, 2019.

For the first time, visitors of the National Museum have an opportunity to see works by Jury Gerasimenka-Zhyzneuski, bright representative of the national school of drawing, virtuoso of graphic art, author of a series of easel drawings and illustrations to poetry and prose of the classics of Belarusian literature. Heroes of Belarusian folk tales come to life in the serene and cheerful works of the artist, abundant with details and interesting storylines.

The author also created portraits and thematic compositions using lithography, etching, linocut, watercolor, pastel, sanguine and sauce techniques. Searching his own new path in art, the master freely united the traditions of the Belarusian art school with the traditions of the Renaissance and moved from impressionistic “A la prima” pastels to purely abstract visualization of his philosophical quest “Neomagnetism”.

Jury Gerasimenka-Zhyzneuski (1948–1997) was an artist, endowed by nature with an extraordinary gift of creating beautiful, noble, pure and sublime images of universal value. “As a student, he already proved himself to be a capable, searching and promising artist with great creative potential. He justified the hopes of his teachers and became one of the most active members of the Belarusian Union of Artists,” wrote his mentor, People’s Artist of Belarus, professor Vasil Sharangovich.

His works often appeared as a results of his numerous travels and meetings with scientists and artists, his joint work with writers and poets. Fortunately, his talent was noticed and recognized by his contemporaries. Gerasimenka-Zhyzneuski represented our country at international and all-Union art contests, constantly participated in republican exhibitions and received multiple awards. Series of master’s illustrations are distinguished by their visual and expressive precision. His design of the book “Silence of the Grass” by Vasil Zujonak was awarded the I degree diploma at the Republican Book Contest of 1980.

For the design of the book by Jakub Kolas from the two-volume book “Selected writings” of Janka Kupala and Jakub Kolas in 1981 Gerasimenka-Zhyzneuski was awarded Francysk Skaryna Diploma.

In 1984, his works were again recognized the best in the republic: for series of illustrations to the books of Bykau “Sign of Misfortune” and Vasil Vitka “Fairy Tales and Flowers” he was awarded the I degree diploma.

Jury Gerasimenka-Zhyzneuski is a representative of the second generation of creative dynasty, which for a century has been creating highly artistic works, carefully preserving respect for national traditions. His children continued his search for the new artistic paths and today work in the field of arts and crafts and in the art of sculpture.

At the exhibition, the viewers can see the most famous works of the master from the collections of the National Art Museum of the Republic of Belarus, the State Literary-Memorial Museum of Jakub Kolas and the State Museum of History of Belarusian Literature. The exposition features over twenty graphic and pictorial works, over sixty book illustrations and headpieces created during three bright creative decades of Jury Gerasimenka-Zhyzneuski. The exposition is supplemented with 12 books illustrated by the master, awards, documents and photographs from the collections of the National Library of Belarus, the Presidential Library of the Republic of Belarus, the Belarusian State Museum-Archive of Literature and Art and from the family collection. A documentary television film by Aliaksandr Damaratski from the series “The Light of a Distant Star” (2005), featuring relatives and friends of Jury Gerasimenka-Zhyzneuski, will be shown at the exhibition.

Curator of the exhibition – Sviatlana Rzheutskaja, researcher of the Scientific and Archival Department of the National Art Museum of the Republic of Belarus