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01 April 2008

Soviet Venus — All Beauty in Art

The Russian Museum in Saint-Petersburg hosted the “Soviet Venus” exhibition. 120 graphic works, paintings and objects of applied and decorative arts represented women’s images of the Soviet epoch.

UNIDENT and the cultural and charitable institution U-ART became the general sponsors of the exhibition. The company’s partners have been long familiar with these initiatives of the company; moreover, the most loyal partners support and personally participate in such activities.

visitors The Bather

The first visitors of the exhibition

B. Kustodiev. The Bather, 1921

The “Soviet Venus” exhibition embraced epochs from late Kustodiev to middle Vinderman, i.e. the middle of the 1980s. The two words in the title of the exhibition are equally important: on the one hand, Venus is the goddess of love and beauty, on the other hand, Soviet is the Soviet period of the Russian history from the October Revolution to 1991.  
The exposition, arranged in the cozy halls of the Benois Wing of the Russian Museum, was symbolically divided into several stages of the Soviet epoch. The first hall exhibits works representing the woman of the first period of the times under the Soviet power: a strong emancipated woman, who is on par with men and who often lacks any marked sexual character.

Natalia Varguleva (UNIDENT) and Joseph Kiblitsky Lyudmila Listratova

Natalia Varguleva (UNIDENT) and Joseph Kiblitsky (Palace Edition Publishing House of the Russian Museum)

Lyudmila Listratova (UNIDENT) at the media preview of the “Soviet Venus” exhibition

The second hall is a symbiosis of various feminine representations combining the artistic visualization of female athletes, Komsomol activists and female metro workers with refined and feminine images of that epoch. A separate hall exhibited women’s images represented in photography: these are journalistic photos and classic nude-style images made by prominent photographs and unknown authors, which best picture a true-to-life and exquisite image of the Soviet woman. The last hall exhibits works of the 1970−80s. Here one can see woman’s representations according to the classical canons as well as plainly grotesque, and even anecdotic exhibits. Alongside works of art, well known to art experts, one could find here items from private collections, which were displayed to the general public for the first time.

In many respects, it became possible to organize the “Soviet Venus” exhibition thanks to the sponsorship by UNIDENT and U-ART. The anniversary exhibition marking the 90th anniversary of the October Revolution sparked a wide public response.

After the Cross


A. Samokhvalov. After the Cross, 1934−1935

I. Shagin. Youth, 1932

The woman’s portrait “Juliet Two Models

N. Bogushevskaya. The woman’s portrait “Juliet”, 1935

A. Shevchenko. Two Models, 1929