Moscow City Government
Moscow City Department of Culture
Russian Academy of Arts
Moscow Museum of Modern Art
Valentin Samarine «Sanki Magic»
The second discovery of photography
Date: April 1 — May 9, 2011
Venue: Moscow Museum of Modern Art (25 Petrovka)
Valentin Till Maria Samarine-Smirnov (1928) is a representative of Leningrad underground culture, immigrated to France in the early 1980s. His solo photo exhibition «Sanki Magic» will be held in the Moscow Museum of Modern Art.
Valentin Samarine was an active participant of the cultural and political life in Leningrad. He upheld interests of artists of the «second culture». In 1978, the photographer organized «Studio 974», an art gallery in his own apartment. The studio hosted regular exhibitions of Leningrad artists and photographers. An atmosphere of «total democracy» reigned there.
Samarine’s art recorded the key cultural events of the epoch. His photos depicted such significant events, as Andrey Tarkovsky’s burial service in Alexander Nevsky Cathedral, Joseph Brodsky’s performances, cross procession in St. Sergey Metochion. Inspired by «Choreographic Miniatures» by Leonid Yakobson, the photographer was keen on ballet. He took pictures of many theater and ballet performances. But soon, through the pressure of the Soviet authorities, the photographer had to immigrate to France, where he continued his photo experiments.
Samarine called his oeuvre «sanki art». It was a special technique of the «new old» silver-based photography. «Sanki is an ordinance of the old silver-based photography, metamorphoses of energy projections, invisible in the ordinary photo, metaphysics of invisible projections of the Light and the Shadow of the spiritual world of a person, his passions», said the author. The word «sanki» was adopted from «Sense energetics» book about Ancient Chinese philosophy. The notion reveals invisible energy potentials of Time and Space, which determine our earthly existence. This special technique enables the master to display the things that are hidden from the viewers in the ordinary photos.
The show at the MMOMA will feature works from the collection of the Museum, private collections, some never-before-exhibited works.
Artworks by Samarine are in the collections of Moscow Museum of Modern Art; the Russian Museum; Yaroslavl Art Museum; the Museum of Non-Conformist Art, St-Petersburg; the State Museum of Urban Sculpture, St-Petersburg; Fyodor Dostoevsky Literary and Memorial Museum, St-Petersburg; St-Petersburg State Museum of Theater and Music; National Library of France, Paris. In the year 2009 his solo exhibition “Metaphysic of light and shade” was held in the Russian Museum.