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“It has always seemed important to me to keep the picture plane as a whole, as a given. The illusion of deep space destroys the natural two-dimensionality of the image. I have long understood this law of painting and have always strived for the integrity of the original plane. This flatness of the image, rediscovered by the artists of the twentieth century, is one of the most important phenomena in painting of our time.“
Yuriy Nikolayevich never tired of repeating how lucky he was in his time to be in the Stroganov School. He spoke with great respect and reverence for his teachers. Even such a sketch has survived - a portrait of one of the teachers, Heinrich Mavrikiyevich Ludwig. “... I had amazing teachers. For example, Ivan Vasilyevich Lamtsov, who taught us a discipline forbidden in the thirties - architectonics, architectural composition. Now it seems even incomprehensible for what reasons it was banned.
Yuriy Nikolayevich was very fond of drawing not only on watercolor paper, but also on wallpaper. Of course, this feature could not be ignored by people who are attentive and sensitive to art. Olga Kochik, a remarkable scientist, art critic, fascinated at the same time by the art of Primitiveness and the art of the twentieth century, considered such a choice of material not just random, but the only possible one.
This song by Maxim Leonidov was released in 1996, and in 1997, when we were in Crimea, it became practically the anthem of our trip. I don’t know why, but it constantly sounded from the loudspeakers on the embankment, in the evening it was played on an invisible dance floor. Yuriy Nikolayevich purred it while working in the room. And that is why there was an absolutely stable association of that Crimean September with that song.
There were a lot of sketches from Crimea. Yuriy Nikolayevich planned to work with them in oil upon his return during autumn and winter. But at the end of the year there was an exhibition in Vadim Sidur Museum, and it was necessary to get ready for it. So there were very few Crimeanian canvases. Although there were some absolutely marvelous among them. One of these works is now in Germany, here it is in the photo.
The whole journey was like a confrontation between expectations and reality. Yuriy Nikolayevich was in Crimea before that once, more than twenty years ago, in the seventies with Inga. I loved Crimea, I was there both in childhood and in my youth for the last time and also in the seventies. In general, we both remembered it in completely different ways. We decided that we would not go to Koktebel. This village was associated with wonderful memories.
Yuriy Nikolayevich painted watercolors every day, at least in those days when it was possible. He usually worked in daylight, but if we wandered around the neighborhood for a long time (which happened more often than on our other trips), work was postponed until the evening. Considering the light and water cuts which was typical for the whole Crimea, the usual plan - one per day, or even better two watercolors - was not always carried out.
Yuriy Nikolayevich loved to paint his watercolors on a wallpaper, almost all of his famous works were painted on it. Nevertheless, in Crimea, he categorically refused it, he said that it did not suit the Crimean flavor, landscapes at all. So we took with us thirty sheets of good thick watercolor papers, which his friends brought him from everywhere As a result, when he was painting on it he was very annoyed as good paper was warping, as befits paper under watercolors.
During the whole stay in Crimea we only once got out of our village to Feodosia. Frankly speaking, not for the sake of attractions and museums, but rather just to travel. While walking, we came across the restaurant "Feodosia", in which I was in my distant childhood, we saw it from below, from the embankment. We began to climb the stairs, and suddenly Yuriy Nikolayevich said, "Wait, I'll draw ."
We decided to go to Crimea in 1997 completely unexpectedly. It was summer, that was a kind of calm period, the works were not selling well; there was no way to go far - and I offered to go to Crimea. Here everything, of course, was not easy as well: the country was in ruins, either the Soviet Union, or Ukraine, we got there on a half-broken train - it seemed like an eternity. Finally we arrived in Ordzhonikidze village, in the middle between Feodosia and Koktebel.
The source of this portrait is very unusual. At the end of the 2000s, due to health issues, Yuriy Nikolayevich spent more time at home, normally, listened to music either on the Melodiya radio channel, or found some kind of television channels. One evening I heard him shouting to me from the next room: "Look, what a powerful cellist!" It is impossible to remember now what she was playing with the symphony orchestra, and her name was forgotten.
The girl from this portrait did not come to Yuriy Nikolayevich, but to his former student and then - neighbor in the studio, Mikhail Yakushin. A rare case when Larin became interested in a practically stranger. It took several sessions to sketch on the canvas. They agreed that one more meeting was needed - Yuriy Nikolayevich could not decide on the composition. This airy and gentle figure was definitely plastically interesting.
Tatiana Petrova, Yuriy Nikolayevich’s friend, also an artist, considered him to some extent as her teacher. Sometimes they made sketches together during short walks around Moscow, went to exhibitions. He looked at her watercolors, gently noted what he did not like, and why. He showed his new works. She was a frequent guest in the studio and at our home. Yuriy Nikolayevich considered Tanya to be very talented. Once in spring he invited her to pose, and she gladly agreed.
Evgeniy Korobeinikov studied in the last group, which Yuriy Nikolayevich led at the Art School of the remembrance of the year 1905. He was uncommunicative and tough, his childhood and adolescence were not easy, but thanks to his talent, he became one of the closest students. Yuriy Nikolayevich closely followed his development as an independent painter, when he could, he went to his exhibitions. It was interesting to watch them move from work to work, quietly exchanging a few phrases.
Naum Korzhavin is a famous (anti) Soviet poet, whom Yuriy Larin, then an engineer, met in the distant 60s in Chisinau, at his literary evening. After that, Yuriy Nikolayevich and Naum Moiseyevich talked all night. He was a special person, and his fate was not easy. For a long time he lived in America, exposed everything there right and left, it seems to me that the fight against the regime, which is always in conflict with individuality, was his important feature, regardless of where he lived
After a large exhibition in the Central House of Artists in 1989, a long break began. The first gallery owners had already appeared, but Yuriy Nikolayevich did not trust them, and all the negotiations did not lead to anything. Here my friends and colleagues came to the rescue, who appreciated and loved Yuriy Larin’s work. Dodo Barkalaya said that Alexander Ostrovsky’s wife, that time an excellent resuscitator, and now the owner of the INVITRO laboratory.
Yuriy Saveliyevich Zlotnikov is considered to be one of the first abstractionists of the "thaw" period, an outstanding figure of its kind. They had known each other from time immemorial. Once Yuriy Nikolayevich introduced me to him at his exhibition in the Central House of Artists in 1989. While Yuriy Nikolayevich was talking with representatives of museums, Zlotnikov took me from work to work, commenting on them - and I must say that he was also a strong art theorist.
Anatoliy Chebotaryev was Yuriy Nikolayevich’s longtime friend. They met back in Stalingrad, where Yura lived with his adoptive parents: they used to play together in the yard, go together on dangerous adventures around the neighborhood, and watch football at the newly restored stadium as stowaways. And then they ended up together in the Sredne-Akhtubinsk orphanage. Suddenly, a boy came out of the crowd and said: “Oh, this is the lad from Tractorny! I know him! ".
This portrait is now in the collection of the New Jerusalem Art Museum. By virtue of circumstances Zhenya worked for five years in the studio of Yuriy Nikolayevich in Kozitsky Lane, painted cheerful and bright southern landscapes; they were friends since the exhibition at the Ermolova Theater in 1982.
This is a portrait of my son when he was twenty years old. I must say that most of his life he resisted art in all its manifestations .. Even, perhaps, was a fighter against art! For some part of his childhood I managed to drag him around museums and concerts with all the enlightenment fervor, but at the age of twelve he resolutely rejected my cultural tricks, leaving only literature for himself. It was not an easy challenge for him to become a member of the artist's family at the age of 17.
Almost all artists paint self-portraits. Many write them often and as a result have a fairly extensive portfolio of such works. Yuriy Nikolayevich has very few of them. One he painted in the same period as Inga’s portrait. Presented here, 20 years later, in 1998 after the second neurosurgical operation. It was summer, but it was not possible to get out of Moscow. .