Viktor Toporov: “Instead of depicting objective (external) reality under the angle of this or that creative method, visionary art presumes depicting reality as subjective (internal), which is only indirectly connected to the objective reality: “unprecedented collection of past experiences” (as academician Pavlov defined dreams - daydreams in our case).
Visionary art has grown historically from religious and mystical practices (e.g. Biblical prophets) and was spread to clerical paintings of late Middle Ages, first of all, in the pictures of the Judgment Day. The key figure of the visionary direction in art was great English poet and artist William Blake, who has devised (drawing on Swedenborg and Bohme) his own theogony and cosmology, having described it in the collection of poems under a common title “Illuminated Books” and illustrated them with wonderful relief etchings.
Starting from the works of Blake (around 200 years ago and later), visionary art was secularized and diversified: it became the world of individual Doors of Perception (according to Aldous Huxley), the world of individual Altered States of Consciousness from Hoffman, Gogol and Edgar Poe to Daniil Andreev, Carlos Castaneda and Garcia Marquez. Similar processes took place in painting - from figurative romantic visionary art of Taras Shevchenko (less-known works will be presented within our exhibition) to suprematism of Malevich, not mentioning significant artistic endeavors of our days (once again covering a wide spectrum - from Lucian Freud and Maxim Kantor - another participant of our exhibition - to some Hirst).”
The concept of the project is connected with two issues: 1) separating true visionary art from its commercial imitation; in this regard, we fully rely on our curators); 2) realization of visionary art as a cognitive phenomenon connected - via Savant syndrome or directly - with autism.
The exhibition is multidisciplinary: it also includes public lectures (V. Toporov, M. Kantor, M. Trofimenkov), literary performances and a master class in “visionary” writing (Natalia Romanova), film screening (film “Hunter”, presented by leading actor and Nika Award winner Tatiana Shapovalova and Kiev critic Sergey Semenov), as well as a special screening of a multi-genre project entitled “Teutoburg Forest” (Kantor-Toporov).
The art part will feature works by artists from St Petersburg (author of legendary “Limonka” Pavel Losev, Grigoriy Yushchenko), Kiev (participants of the sensational exhibition “Apocalypse and Renaissance in the Chocolate House” Michael Merfenko and David Chichkan) and lightboxes developed in collaboration with IZOLYATSIA, winner of the 7th Arte Laguna Prize 13, Richard Ansett UK.
AUT3 showing at the National Museum of Taras Shevchenko, Kyiv UKR - April 5th till May 18th 2013.