We are pleased to announce that Maxim Boxer returns to London for the second exhibition and auction celebrating contemporary and avant-garde Russian art with Metaphysics in Russian Art.

The phenomenon of ‘metaphysical painting’ first appeared in Italy in the works of Giorgio de Chirico, Carlo Carra and Giorgio Morandi around 1910. Their work was determined to penetrate the fundamentals of being, reaching out to the origins of objects and ideas. Although these key propositions resonated widely in Russian art and philosophy, here they underwent a distinctive reinterpretation. Rather then sharing Italian fascination with the magic of pure space, Russian artists focused on the objects. Eager to grasp the supreme existential meaning of the ordinary, they approached the reality via ‘tangible vision’, enhancing the speculation towards things with tactile contact with their form, volume, and texture.

Opening to coincide with the Russian Art Week and showcasing some 50 works by modern and contemporary Russian artists, Moscow curator and gallery owner Maxim Boxer’s Metaphysics in Russian Art exhibition will focus on the evolution of metaphysical thought behind art produced by Russian artists from the early twentieth century to the present day.

The exhibition includes works by established masters of ‘unofficial art’, Boris Sveshnikov, Oscar Rabin, Vladimir Nemukhin, Vladimir Yakovlev, Dmitry Krasnopevtsev and Ilya Tabenkin, whose post-war practice actualised the themes of magic life of an object and the glory of the everyday. The selection of paintings by Kuzma Petrov-Vodkin serves as an epigraph to the exhibition. Throughout his practice Petrov-Vodkin developed an original interpretation of the key themes within metaphysical art: from death and resurrection to a somnambulist existence within urban labyrinths.

The show will also introduce a generation of artists from 1980s–1990s, who professed puritanical simplicity and integrity of expression in their art: Igor Makarevich, Nina Kotel, Nikita Alexeev, Irina Zatulovskaya, Vladimir Salnikov, Arkady Nasonov, Vitaly Pushnitsky, Gor Chakhal, and Alexander Pankin.

A final section will focus on young artists whose practice resists the virtual spatial-temporal shifts of reality today as they strive to assert their inalienable right for a personal, unparalleled view of the world and its ‘simple things’. The display will include selected photographs by Vladislav Efimov, artist and teacher at the Rodchenko School of Photography and Multimedia in Moscow, as well as photographic works by his students.