Retrospective
Ivan Gazdov

16/02/2017 - 23/04/2017

Ivan Gazdov is the guest artist in the halls of the National Gallery, with over 100 works—posters, graphicatures, drawings, and metal sculptures.
As a professor at the Academy of Arts, Ivan Gazdov has spent over forty years in moulding the analytical and creative spirit of young posterists. In the environment of the totally dominant view that art is first and foremost ‘OOC’ (oil on canvas), the artist shows that graphics is a magnificent and true art fanned by freedom, talent, life and thought.
The selected posters with their diverse thematics were created over the course of thirty-five years. Among them are the emblematic works from the ‘Play of Silhouettes’ series —the artist’s trademark—awarded at international competitions, as well as possessions of prestigious world museums (the Bibliothèque Forney in Paris, Die Neue Sammlung in Munich, the Museum of Modern Art in Toyama).
The exhibition includes works by Prof. Gazdov not previously shown under GRAPHICATURE®, his artistic signature trademark for Europe. The name is not a combination of graphic and caricature (as is often interpreted), but means ‘graphic journey—graphic tour’, or, as the artist states in his brief manifesto of 1991: ‘Graphicature concentrates perception. It is as though under the shoe of the tourist lies his entire route. This is a peculiar aesthetic journey in a place with a breath of joy.’ Visitors will also have the opportunity to view the panel, ‘101 Thoughts on Graphicature’, and the unique 1989 interview of 243 questions put to Gazdov by Radoy Ralin.
The impressive collection of original drawings by the artist was created during the period from 1954 to 1984. These reveal the artist’s innermost impulses of his early creative years and are executed in a variety of techniques and an inspiring vitality. The drawings have not been exhibited until now, not because the artist was shy or fond of Emily Dickinson’s ‘secret drawers’, but due to the well-known cognitive aesthetic baggage of those years. A great part of this exhibition was realised through the gracious contribution of works by their owners, admirers of the artist.
The exhibition includes a series of stainless steel sculptures that show the ‘unusual’ potentialities of the ‘usual’ versions in the oeuvre of Prof. Gazdov.
At the opening, the monograph and doctoral work of the artist, ‘Authorship Poster’, and the deluxe publication, ‘GAZDOV DESIGN GRAPHICATURE’, will be presented.