Ukrainian artist Pavel Makov managed to leave Kharkiv. He will present his project at the Venice Biennale – Style

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The 59th Biennale starts on April 23 in Venice. Despite the war, Ukraine will take part in an international art exhibition. This became possible thanks to the team that managed to evacuate fragments of the work of the artist Pavel Makov from Kiev

1. Pavel Makov.  2. Page from the author's book

1. Pavel Makov. 2. Page from the author’s book “Donrose”, 2008-2010 / Photo:, Collage: Today

We carefully prepared for the event. In December 2021, the artist gave an interview for the issue of Vogue MAN s / s 2022, which was to be released in April. At that time, no one could have imagined that the hero of the issue would hide with his family from the bombings in the basement of the Ermilov Center in Kharkov, which has been shelled by the Russian occupiers for more than a month.

Fortunately, 63-year-old Makov managed to evacuate from Kharkov, now he is in Italy, where on April 23 he will present his project to the world.

"Fountain of exhaustion"2003. Bronze model, PinchukArtCentre collection

“Fountain of Exhaustion”, 2003. Bronze model, PinchukArtCentre collection / Photo:

Pavel Makov was born in 1958 in Leningrad. As a teenager he found himself in Simferopol, where he studied at the painting department of the Crimean Art School. He later graduated from the Kharkiv Art and Industrial Institute, choosing the Faculty of Graphics. Makov dedicated his activity and life to graphics.

Pavel Makov in his studio in Kharkov in December 2021

Pavel Makov in his studio in Kharkov in December 2021 / Photo:

At the Venice Biennale, Paul will present a work entitled “Fountain of Exhaustion. Aqua Alta”.

Makov said that the origins of the work back in 1995. Then he created the project “Juice Collection”. The artist painted two rivers of Kharkov. Later, the first drawing with a whole fountain appeared – a multi-tiered symbolic composition, which consists of watering cans.

"Fountain of exhaustion"1996. Technical drawing

“Fountain of Depletion”, 1996. Technical drawing / Photo:

The artist commented:

Venice is a city of dying, a city of loss of strength, a city of exhaustion, so when the curators of The Naked Room offered to apply for the Biennale, I had no doubt which project to choose. Although it would not have occurred to me: I am comfortable creating chamber art, even for one spectator.

Makov himself imagined that his work would hang on a brick wall, and water from the fountain would flow into the Venice Canal. Then his work rhymed with a city that is disappearing underwater, and would be presented perfectly. Unfortunately, the ancient Arsenale bastion does not suggest such a possibility.

Pavel Makov in his studio in Kharkov in December 2021

Pavel Makov in his studio in Kharkov in December 2021 / Photo:

Read the artist’s interview in which he spoke about his attitude to the Biennale, the Soviet Union and life in Kharkov, for the Ukrainian on the publication’s website.

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