Vladimir Slepian

Born: 1930, Vienna
Died: 1998, Paris

Artist, writer. Born in Vienna in the family of a Soviet employee of Vneshtorg called Lev Slepian (1930). Moved to Moscow following his father’s recall and arrest. Studied alongside Yury Zlotnikov at the secondary school of art of the Tretyakov Gallery until the class was disbanded for Formalism (1944–50). Studied mathematics at Leningrad State University (1951–56). Returned to Moscow (1957). Exhibited works for the first time at a student show in Moscow State University. Daniel Cordier curated his Unknown Leningrad Artist exhibition in Paris (1957–58). Emigrated to Poland and France (1958). Legendary figure of the generation of the sixties and father of Abstract Expressionism in Russia. “Slepian was one of the active enthusiasts of the changes in politics and art. His apartment on Trubnaya Street was a meeting place for artists (Yury Zlotnikov, Boris Turetsky and Igor Kukles), critics and writers, including the occasional foreigner. Back then, Slepian promoted the works of Oleg Tselkov; everyone coming to his house could see them” (Igor Shelkovsky). Short but prolific period of painting (1958–62). Adopted an unusual method of painting, an original analogue of Jackson Pollock’s dripping technique, applying the paint using a vacuum cleaner or bicycle pump. Emigrated to France and abandoned painting (1963). Changed his name to Eric Pid, became a playwright and poet. Died of a heart attack in Paris (1998).

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