1913 - 1990

Ira Vilkovir was one of the mysterious figures among Soviet artists, recognized in USSR from 1930's. At the age of 76 she was wearing long hear, liked make-up and had a company of the men in their 20's. The surrealistic compositions of this artist were original and made long before Soviet "underground avante-guard" became popular. They were born in the soul of an artist who had to go through "socialist realism" from A to Z. She painted it for herself with no intend to exhibit or sell. The works unavoidable for Soviet times with incredible titles, like "The anthem of the Vietnam patriots", were sometimes painted also in a very special manner, nonconforming to the boundaries, in a fantastic expressive manner.
Although Ira Vilkovir is unknown to the Western critics, one of her works somehow found the way to the Merrill Berman collection of modern art (which rivals the collections of the Stedlijk Museum and the Museum of Modern Art), and was exhibited in the Smithsonian Institute in 1999.

 (general view of the current condition).
Click for larger view

Milk, 1949, oil on canvas, 55x77

Dream (Self-Portrait), 1971, oil on canvas, 47x63

Copyright 1989-2003