Ilya Glazunov

© Victor Velikzhanin/TASS

TASS-FILE. July 9, 2017, in the 88th year of life died the Soviet and Russian painter, founder and rector of the Russian Academy of painting, sculpture and architecture, people’s artist of the USSR Ilya Glazunov. Editorial from the guardian, the DOSSIER prepared a biography of this famous artist.


Ilya Glazunov was born on 10 June 1930 in Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg) in the family of the scientist-historian Sergei Fedorovich Glazunov and Olga Konstantinovna Glazunov. In 1942 during the siege of Leningrad parents and almost all relatives Glazunov died, he was evacuated to Novgorod oblast. Returned to Leningrad in 1944, he enrolled in art school at the Leningrad Institute of painting, sculpture and architecture (Repin Institute of arts in) them. I. E. Repin.

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Died artist Ilya Glazunov

Glazunov graduated from the Institute of painting, sculpture and architecture. Repin (now – St . Petersburg state academic Institute of painting, sculpture and architecture. Repin) in 1957, studied in the Studio of Boris Ioganson.

In 1956, Glazunov became a laureate of international art competition in Prague for a portrait of a member of the Resistance Movement, Czech journalist Julius Fucik. In 1957 he held his first solo exhibition Glazunov in the Central house of art workers in Moscow.

As a graduation work at the Institute Glazunov presented the painting “Roads of war”, which depicts the retreat of the Soviet army in 1941, but was rejected by the academic Council. Having received the diploma of the “Troika”, were distributed by the teacher of drawing and trigonometry to Izhevsk, then in Ivanovo, but soon returned to Moscow.

Since 1958 a lot of support for the artist was provided by the poet Sergei Mikhalkov. In the 1960s Glazunov traveled a lot and created portraits of political figures in the USSR and abroad. In 1964, exhibition of works by Glazunov, organized in one of the premises of the Arena was closed at the request of the Moscow branch of Union of artists.

In 1964-1972 was the head of the Patriotic club “Rodina”, was one of the founders in 1965 of the all-Russia society of protection of monuments of history and culture (Voopiik). In 1967 he was accepted as a member of the Union of artists of the USSR.

From 1978 he taught at the Moscow state art Institute. V. I. Surikov. In 1981, on behalf of the Ministry of culture of the RSFSR was organized in Moscow the all-Russian Museum of decorative-applied and folk art and became its Director. In 1986 he founded the Russian Academy of painting, sculpture and architecture, has been its rector. In 2009 the Academy was given the name of Ilya Glazunov.

In the 1990s, participated in the restoration of buildings of the Moscow Kremlin, was the artistic supervisor of the restoration of the Alexandrovsky and Andreevsky halls of the Grand Kremlin Palace and the interiors of the 14th corps of the Kremlin. In 2004 was opened the Moscow state gallery of Ilya Glazunov, which exhibited more than 300 works of the artist, donated by him to Moscow.

Glazunov is the author of more than three thousand works. The most famous monumental canvases of the artist – “Mystery of the XX century” (1978), panels at the headquarters of UNESCO, “the Contribution of the USSR to world culture and civilization” (1980), “Eternal Russia” (1988), “the Market of our democracy” (1999). Widely known in Russia and abroad as a portraitist, he painted portraits of domestic and foreign public figures, actors, politicians, etc., the Author of illustrations to the works of Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Alexander Kuprin, Mikhail Lermontov and other Russian writers. Created artwork for productions of the Bolshoi theater, Berlin Opera and the Odessa Opera house.

People’s artist of USSR (1980). Laureate of the State prize of Russia (1997). Full cavalier of the Order “For merits before Fatherland” (1995, 2000, 2005, 2010), also awarded the order of red banner of Labour (1985). He has state awards of foreign countries, the gold medal of UNESCO “For the contribution to world culture and civilization” (1999).

Member of the Russian Academy of arts, member of the Royal Academy of arts in Madrid and Barcelona.

Author of books of memoirs “the Road to you” (1965-1966) and “Russia crucified” (2005).

He was married to Nina Vinogradova-Benois (1933-1986). Two children, both artists: Ivan Vera.

In recent years, his companion was Inessa Orlova.