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ArtistsYefrosiniya Yermilova-Platova

Yermilova-Platova, Yefrosiniya Fedoseyevna

(b. 1895 Village of Kamenka, Tavricheskaya guberniya – d. 1974 Moscow)

Painter, graphic artist


1914 – Entered the Moscow University (Department of History and Philology).

1914–1916 – Studied drawing under K. Yuon and I. Dudin.

1917–1918 – Attended I. Mashkov’s workshop.

1919 – Participated in the founding of an artistic studio, museum and poster workshop in Nikopol.

1919–1921 – Worked in the art section of the Crimean National Department of Education in Simferopol under Ya. Tugendhold.

Took part in exhibitions beginning in 1919, including: 1919 – exhibition of Kherson artists; 1932 – Artists of the RSFSR [Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic] During the Past 15 Years (Leningrad); 1934 – exhibition at the Club of Master Artists (Moscow) together with her husband, F. Platov; 1939, 1944 – personal exhibitions.

1949 – Expelled from the MOSKh [Moscow Artists’ Union].

1992 – posthumous personal exhibition at the Kuntsevo Exhibition Hall (Moscow).

“I don’t remember the exact year, but the exhibition by Goncharova, Larionov, and Burlyuk in Kherson left an indelible impression on my artwork for the rest of my life. I always really enjoyed primitivists such as Giotto, Pieter Bruegel, and contemporary French painters.”

The sources of her series of paintings Faces and Streets, At the Barber Shop, and Themes from Old Russian Frescoes are evident: folk painting, sign boards, popular prints, and icons. But these merely served as starting points for her work. c.> The unlimited fantasy, spontaneous self-expression, and organic primitivism of Yermilova-Platova sewed as a trustworthy antidote to the poison of stylization and even imitation. Her motto was “I paint everything I love.”

“In my childhood, I looked after flowers.” Flowers in the field and in the garden, exotic flowers, later became the dominant motif of her still lifes.

“The beauty of the Dnieper River has left its imprint on me for my entire life: its extraordinary high waters, riding in rowboats, sailboats and other small crafts into the city of Nikopol during both stormy and calm weather.” The word “imprint” seems to be very precise, for it is unlikely that Yermilova-Flatova painted her Kamenka-on-the-Dnieper scenes directly from life, year in, year out, in spring and in fall. It rather seems that she was traveling along the paths ingrained in her memory, again and again experiencing the feeling of being on the boundless waters or steppe, with the sky overhead. Her space is magnetic; it is made of “flying matter,” the condensation and dispersal of light, and is organized “by lines that express the crystal clarity of the details and a slightly indistinct landscape.” The artist’s ideal is “the Japanese linethat can be hard like metal and soft like down. It conveys a calm balance and a swift motion. The line is maintained both on the plane and in space.”

O. Roytenberg. Neuzheli kto-to vspomnit, chto my byli… Iz istorii khudozhestvennoy zhizni. 1925—1935 [Can It be that Someone Remembers that we Existed… From the History of Artistic Life: 1925—1935]. M.: Galart, 2004. Pp. 370, 372—373.

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