Vladimir Yakovlev

Born: 1934, Balakhna (Nizhny Novgorod Region)
Died: 1998, Moscow

Painter, graphic artist. Grandson of Mikhail Yakovlev. Born in the family of white-collar worker Igor Yakovlev in the town of Balakhna on the River Volga in Nizhny Novgorod Region (1934). Moved with his family to Moscow and worked as a courier and retoucher for the Art Publishing House (from 1944). Following a serious illness, began to go prematurely blind. Also suffered periods of mental instability and spent time in and out of psychiatric clinics (from 1945). Self-taught artist who took up drawing under the influence of modern Western art seen at the VI International Festival of Young People and Students in Moscow (1957). Met Vasily Sitnikov (1957). Passed through a period of interest in non-objective painting and the influence of Pablo Picasso, whose motifs he sometimes reproduced. Later addressed spontaneous intuitive creativity, primarily painting in gouache on paper, varying the same subjects (mostly portraits and flowers). Several pictures are reminiscent of the works of the German New Fauvists (1970s). Died in Moscow (1998). Contributed to exhibitions in Russia (from 1963) and abroad (from 1970), including Abstraction in Russia: XX Century at the Russian Museum in St Petersburg (2001–02), Times of Change: Art in the Soviet Union (1960–85) at the Russian Museum in St Petersburg (2006) and a joint one-day exhibition with Eduard Steinberg at the Fyodor Dostoyevsky Museum in Moscow (1963) and the Bar-Gera/Gmurzynska Gallery in Cologne (1970).

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