signed and titled in Cyrillic and dated 'II 79'
on the reverse
oil on canvas
In June 1976, Leonid Borisov was one of a clutch of artists who applied to the Leningrad authorities for permission to hold an open-air exhibition at the Peter and Paul Fortress. On receiving no response, they went ahead anyway and brought their paintings to the historic site, only to be met by militia and be packed into patrol cars to face interrogation by officials from the Ministry of Culture. The artists however, were successful in extracting permission for future exhibitions and Borisov in fact was afforded solo and group shows in the USSR through the late 1970s and 1980s. In 1991, the State Tretyakov Gallery bought two of his works from the exhibition ‘Modern Artists – Homage to Malevich’.
Borisov’s compositions are typically spare, clean, geometric-based designs. Three other works by Borisov from the Bar-Gera collection were sold at Sotheby’s in November 2016 and June 2017.
'Due to the cultural and historical circumstances of Russian life, an artist does not float downstream, but is paddling out by himself' writes Alexander Bobrovsky in his introduction to Borisov’s 1995 exhibition catalogue at the State Russian Museum. 'And he finds his resources not in the ready-made computer programs but in the "eye of a simple joiner"'.
oil on canvas
Canvas: 25 1/2 by 19 1/2 in., 65 by 49.5cm
Framed: 26 1/2 by 20 1/2 in., 67 by 52cm