Item #1928 [COLD WAR AND CULTURAL INTERACTION] V Amerike [i.e. In America]. O. Vereisky.
[COLD WAR AND CULTURAL INTERACTION] V Amerike [i.e. In America]
[COLD WAR AND CULTURAL INTERACTION] V Amerike [i.e. In America]
[COLD WAR AND CULTURAL INTERACTION] V Amerike [i.e. In America]
[COLD WAR AND CULTURAL INTERACTION] V Amerike [i.e. In America]
[COLD WAR AND CULTURAL INTERACTION] V Amerike [i.e. In America]
[COLD WAR AND CULTURAL INTERACTION] V Amerike [i.e. In America]
[COLD WAR AND CULTURAL INTERACTION] V Amerike [i.e. In America]

[COLD WAR AND CULTURAL INTERACTION] V Amerike [i.e. In America]

Moscow: Sovetskii khudozhnik, 1965. Item #1928

102 pp.: ill. 19,5x19,5 cm. In original illustrated dust jacket and original illustrated wrappers. Minor fragments of dust jacket lost, tear repaired with paper, some stains on spine and blank leaf, few ink notes on rear side of covers and blank leaf. Otherwise a very good copy with clean pages.

It is a well-illustrated travel account created by Soviet artist Orest Vereisky (1915-1993). He was born into a family of well-known Russian and Soviet artist Georgy Vereisky (1886-1962). Among his art mentors were his father himself and avantgarde artist Alexander Osmerkin. Orest Vereisky gained fame as a book illustrator of wartime and post-war works. He also released diverse series of drawings, watercolors and lithographs which he created during trips to Czechoslovakia, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt (all in 1955), Finland (1957), Iceland (1958) and the USA (1960 and 1963).

In the late 1950s, after a long break, the Soviet Union restarted sending privileged artists to the United States on creative missions. On their return, these artists showed etudes, sketches and paintings based on what they had seen during American travels at official exhibitions, as well as their works were published in large magazines “Iunost”, “Ogonek”, “Kul’tura i zhizn’”, etc. These trips were a part of a grandiose exchange program approved between the USA and the USSR in 1958. International tours had been organized for Bolshoi Theater and various dance ensembles, delegations of writers, journalists and musicians. Artists like V. Goryaev, I. Semyonov, Ia. Romas, O. Vereisky, T. Salakhov, V. Ryndin, A. Shmarinov et al. joined them. During the Cold War, the official
cultural sphere was also a testing ground for mutual propaganda and was closely intertwined with political decisions made at one time or another.

Orest Vereisky had been to America twice. He made the first trip together with Leningrad artist Andrei Mylnikov. For the second time, Vereisky visited the
country with the 1963 Exhibition of Soviet Graphic Arts. From November 1963 to February 1964, the Exhibition of Soviet Graphic Arts was held in New York, Philadelphia, Washington, Chicago and Milwaukee. In the book “In America”, Vereisky tells about 12 of 120 days of the trip. Focusing on the everyday life of Americans, the artist shows Black and White people, adults and children, students, workers, artists, baseball players, etc. There is a story about John Kennedy’s election campaign in 1960 and about the assassination of the president in 1963 – the artist witnessed people’s reactions and general atmosphere in both cases. Vereisky publishes a detailed description of the artistic life of America and stories about meetings with artists, gallery owners, and Russian emigrants.

There is politically engaged art criticism about the superiority of realism over abstractionism. Vereisky is biased towards abstract art, repeatedly sadly informs the reader about the dominance of abstract painting in beautiful American museums and also focuses on the fact that this language is incomprehensible to the ordinary American. In 1964, drawings from the 1963-1964 trip were displayed in the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts. In 1973, one Moscow venue held a joint exhibition of several artists on their American trips. New York Times correspondent Christopher S. Wren rated Vereisky’s works better than others.

Worldcat shows copies located in LoC, Columbia, Harvard, Yale, Princeton, Illinois, Wisconsin, Ohio, Duke, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Washington, Brown Universities, New College of Florida, NYPL and Alaska State Library.

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