Valentin Sidorov: “Shine on, shine brightly, so the light will stay alive…”
The anniversary exhibition of Valentin Mikhailovich Sidorov — Peopleʼs Artist of the USSR, full member of the Russian Academy of Arts, and Chairman of the Artistsʼ Union of Russia — ran in the Engineering Wing of the Tretyakov Gallery from November 13 through December 14. The retrospective continues the series of personal exhibitions of the masters of the generation of the 1960s, the “shestidesyatniki”. Today the rediscovery of the art of this period is an actual phenomenon. The exhibitions of Nikolai Andronov, Pavel Nikonov, Gely Korzhev, and Dmitry Zhilinsky were outstanding events of the cultural life of recent years. A contemporary viewer may see the phenomenon of the “shestidesyatniki” in a new light when comparing the work of different creative individuals who are often polar opposites. Thus, in the Tretyakov Gallery, along with the exhibition of Valentin Sidorov, there is the exhibition of Oscar Rabin, who also celebrated his 80th birthday this year. World War II left an indelible mark on the lives of these artists - their formative creative period was the post-war years, full of hardships. While their manner and individual style are so different, their formal searching is so varied, and the themes and plots are so unlike each other, that the art of their generation is charged with a special ethical and philosophical content that makes them stand out from the artists of the generations that followed.