Sanitary Technician! Be the Best on Your Working Place!

Valery Barykin

About the Artist

Valery Barykin was born May 2, 1966 in Ivanovo in a military family.

He studied at the Polytechnic University of Nizhny Novgorod, was in the Army, graduated from Nizhny Novgorod Theatre School specialty "Theater Artist."
Since the mid-1990s. he tries different kinds of art, in painting, drawing, performance, print design. He is... Read More

Valery Barykin

Valery Barykin was born May 2, 1966 in Ivanovo in a military family.

He studied at the Polytechnic University of Nizhny Novgorod, was in the Army, graduated from Nizhny Novgorod Theatre School specialty "Theater Artist."
Since the mid-1990s. he tries different kinds of art, in painting, drawing, performance, print design. He is in the Union of the artists of Nizhny Novgorod "Gallery of Atypical Art", participates in group exhibitions. He is developing a style of "Soviet Pin-Up" since 2000s.

In the 1930s - 40s covers of American magazines were a fetish for soldiers, long-distance truck drivers and ordinary bachelors. These magazines were sold well, though people rarely read them: men were only interested in a bright illustration, which they hurried to 'pin up' to the wall of a lonely bedroom. In 1950s there were loads of men's magazines full of bright pictures for public rejoicing. Juicy images of pin - up girls were copied from black and white photos or sometimes even drawn on the photos. These illustrations have raised some real superstar models with lots of fans.

Pin - up style has few uncomplicated topics: usually girls were dressed in men shirts, hard hats, working clothes, although during the war time girls were mainly depicted wearing uniforms. For example, images of girls were drawn on planes' fuselages to inspire pilots on feats. This tradition is still up-to-date: Virgin Atlantic Airways use pin - up images to decorate the exterior of their planes. However, the most popular topic of pin - up style is when pretty girls are stuck in a sexy but absolutely unreal situation.

Surprisingly, in the most democratic country in the world these erotic illustrations were quite chaste: girls are never naked. In the classic pin - up style there are several rules: sometimes we can see laces of an underwear garment or the waitress is dressed up but we can tell by the look in her eyes that she is not that shy. These sensual hints and allusions is the most exciting feature of pin - up tradition. Due to this chastity of images pin - up illustrations were in high demand in the world of advertising. If we look back on the history of advertising it was then a starting point of using these sexy images for all kinds of ads. Later, pin - up illustrations were used in the pop art, which basically studied language and symbols of our cruel world of consumers.

Soviet pin - up took a very logical way from the tradition of Russian Socialist Art. We can figure out these predictable steps of development of the style: while in the United States people enjoyed these beautiful images of pretty girls, Soviet people saw posters depicting strict women, policemen or firemen, who were permanently giving advice to the society, or dead leaders, who were reminding people about the values of communism. By the end of the 80s a few artists who had traveled to the USA had mixed diametrically opposing traditions of the pop art and advertising with socialist realism. The result of this experiment can be seen in the new ironic style of social art with no boundaries, idols and conventionality. Those artists have certainly succeeded at eroticising of social realism.

Valery Barykin can be seen as one of the successors of this tradition. He was fond of Socialist Realism but then fell for American illustration. Valery brought his special attention to Norman Rockwell, who worked with The Saturday Evening Post. Valery's very first illustration was so successful that became extremely popular on the internet. This is how curators became aware of his style. Works by Valery Barykin were exhibited at several Russian Art Fairs and were in the programme of the 4th Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art.

Valery Barykin works with a tradition of soviet erotica which has typical features of classic American or Italian ones. Should we remind you of 'The Queen of Gas Station' (popular Soviet film) or a female student who slowly takes off her clothes while reading her study notes in the slapstick comedy film by Leonid Gaidai 'Navazhdenie' (means 'delusion'). The world of Valery Barykin is quite similar to these films. The artist shows us the idealistic Soviet era: model husband gives all his salary to his wife and gorgeous flight attendant suggests passengers delicious éclairs (this sweet is extremely popular among Russians) with a duchesse drink.

Re-examination of canons of this frivolous genre has brought special meaning to Barykins' artworks.  The artist ironically depicts soviet man who has not been used to dealing with these flirty and ambiguous situations on daily basis. Unlike classic pin - up, it is not the girls but men who are stuck in this unusual kind of reality. Moreover, this unique idea makes works by Valery Barykin deeply engaged with psychology.

24 January - 28 February 2013 Solo exhibition "Soviet Pin-Up" Erarta Galleries St.Petersburg

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Artwork

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Give All Your Salary to Your Wife!

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Avoid Abrupt Breaking

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