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In Pursuit of Art. Yakov Kozlov (1918-2015)

Kozlov's paintings from the 1950s till 1990s, presented at this exhibition, include lyrical children portraits, beautiful landscapes, expressive and colourfull genre scenes. Kozlov considered not only skill, but also heart, to be creativity's most important traits. "One's art must go through the heart and soul of the painter"


18.02.2016 — 25.03.2016


In Pursuit of Art. Yakov Kozlov (1918-2015)

An excerpt from the artist's biography: "...His stepfather worked as a shoemaker, and shamelessly used the young artist's sketches as templates for his designs. One client noticed the drawings during a measurement session and exclaimed: "This is a gift of God! Somebody needs to teach this talent." The young boy, upon hearing this statement, fell numb from the overwhelming realization that it was his destiny to be an artist. Yakov Ivanovich became a painter. He was known for refusing to do paintings on order, a trait that, though detracting from his acclaim, allowed him to avoid developing an ego. He continued to create his works without flashiness, a concept foreign to him as a graduate of the Riga Arts Academy.

His works from the 1950s and 1960s, presented in this exhibition, charm you with their natural tones. The artist managed to capture everything, from childhood portraits to beautiful landscapes, in minute and exact detail. Kozlov's style changes in the 60s, bursting with bright details of color. In his painting The Artisans, the artist steps away from portraiture and creates a more romanticized, idyllic depiction of young men and women with a light blue background in an expressive and colorful series.

From the Fair is a play on imagination and intelligence, on the beauty of creating one's own world, on the ability to live through the unlivable, on the ability to experience the unexperienced and to live through what has already happened as if it were taking place for the first time.Kozlov considered not only skill, but also heart, to be creativity's most important traits.

"One's art must go through the heart and soul of the painter, the person depicting the world on this piece of cloth! Life's road is always difficult, but humanity is strong, with a big soul. Humanity never loses its pride and doesn't deter from its way."

Kozlov participated in numerous exhibits, beginning in 1949. His paintings can be found in collections in Russia, the Arts Academy of Riga and in many private collections in Russia and abroad.