MIGRATION + MEMORY: JEWISH ARTISTS OF THE RUSSIAN AND SOVIET EMPIRES from the Vladimir and Vera Torchilin Collection
October 12 – January 28, 2017
Curated by Anna Winestein
This exhibition will feature approximately 100 works drawn from the Vladimir and Vera Torchilin Collection that explore the creative responses as well as historical trajectories of Jewish artists born, trained, or active in the Russian as well as Soviet Empires in the 20th century. The exhibit is structured around the themes of migration and memory that are central to the Jewish experience in this period. It is curated by Ballets Russes Arts Initiative’s Executive Director, Anna Winestein.
The works in the exhibition carry a complex legacy of opportunity and suffering, cooperation and hatred, inclusion and alienation. The opening of the show coincides closely with the centenary of the October Revolution of 1917, which transformed the landscape of choices and options for Russian Jewry, including artists, in many positive ways, while also bringing enormous displacement and violence. In total, it will present the creations of nearly 50 different artists: paintings, drawings, prints, posters and illustrated books, as well as three-dimensional objects, some created within the territory of Imperial Russia or the Soviet Union, and some created after the artists had emigrated to Europe or the United States.
Vladimir and Vera Torchilin moved to the US in the early 1990’s, and after the fall of the Soviet Union were successful in bringing out a large portion of their collection, to which they have continued to add voraciously. Their collection is primarily focused on Russian and Soviet artists–not all of Jewish heritage–but also includes works by Europeans and Americans.
Anna Winestein is an historian of art and theater, an independent curator, and a cultural entrepreneur. She is Executive Director and co-founder of Ballets Russes Arts Initiative (BRAI), and previously served as Creative Director for the Hermitage Museum Foundation. Click here for Anna’s full biography.