Military Review

The memory of Kandiyevka: “the streets are our brushes, the squares are our palettes”

In 2016, 155 celebrated the anniversary of the abolition of serfdom in Russia, and 155 celebrated the events of the largest peasant uprising in Russia in the Penza province, caused by the harsh conditions of the personal liberation of the peasants from serfdom. Today we will talk about perpetuating the theme of the people's struggle for freedom in Soviet monumental art, about the monument of historical and cultural heritage - the Kandievo Uprising mosaic panel by monumentalist Mikhail Alekseevich Trunkov, located in the center of Penza.

“Pretty penny truths.
From the heart of the old wipe.
The streets are our brushes.
Squares are our palettes.
A thousandth time book
Revolution days are not glorified.
On the streets, futurists,
drummers and poets! ”
V. Mayakovsky "Order on the army of art"

At first glance, the episodes of V. Mayakovsky carried to the epigraph are of little concern to one of the most ancient and traditional types of pictorial art, and are more suitable for avant-garde techniques. But it was precisely the monumental forms of art in post-revolutionary Russia, and then in the USSR, because of the wide possibilities of clarity, panoramic character, collectivity of performance, were widely in demand.

Mosaic is called eternal painting, not only because of its more than five thousand years stories. It has special, different from other types of monumental painting properties: the mosaic is utilitarian and decorative, multifaceted and complex, at the same time addressed and understood by the masses, narrative and symbolic, able to absorb the latest achievements of art and keep in touch with traditions. In 1920-30 laconic mosaic graphic means conveyed the very essence of the revolutionary atmosphere.

Here it is - a close-up narrative and symbolic mosaic.

But mosaic decoration was especially popular in the town planning of the USSR, starting with the 1960s. If earlier the architecture of the Stalinist Empire style took on the aesthetic elocutive function, then with the entry into force of the Resolution of the Central Committee of the CPSU and the Council of Ministers of the USSR "On the elimination of excesses in design and construction" from November 4 of 1955, priority was given to the ascetic simplicity of constructive solutions. “Unjustified tower superstructures, numerous decorative colonnades and porticos” were recognized as overkill, and “simplicity, rigor of forms and cost-effective solutions” were recommended.

The typical building with prefab panel houses allowed to move to the first place in the decoration of monumental painting buildings. As in antiquity, it connected spatial arts into a single image - figurative and architecture, which made it possible to call it a synthesis of arts.

Geometric surfaces deprived of “excesses” could take monumental works in a variety of configurations, which, in fact, was their only decoration. Monumental panels played the role of accents in the text of the synthetic artistic work of the massifs of new buildings - these were pauses, caesuras, markings; they compensated for the general monotonous rhythm of the buildings. Such “art of neighborhoods”, looking into the courtyards, and not at the main avenues, has become a completely new practice of 1960-80's. There was even a specific term denoting this design style of residential buildings, and, more precisely, their lateral sides (ends) - "torment".

By the year 1968, by the 50 anniversary of the Leninist plan of monumental propaganda, that is, put forward by V.I. Lenin in 1918, the strategy of the development of monumental art and its mobilization for visual agitation, monumental art became the hallmark of the all-union style, the flourishing and monumental mosaic began. Despite the fact that it was mainly a matter of monumental sculpture, the USSR Union of Artists announced the “revitalization of monumental propaganda and the development of the synthesis of monumental-decorative arts in urban planning”. The Khrushchev Renaissance chose a time-consuming, durable and expensive mosaic not by chance. Mosaic art is typical of the “sixties” interpretation of history, typically with its citizenship, a certain narrativity and publicism.

Since 1960-s in the USSR, the system of urban planning management is changing. 17 October 1969 was approved by the Council of Ministers of the USSR Regulations on the USSR Ministry of Construction, which was supposed to manage the construction of industrial enterprises, buildings and structures, residential buildings and cultural and community facilities. A special role in the management of construction belonged to the Union-Republican State Committee of the USSR for Construction Affairs (Gosstroy of the USSR), which, in accordance with the resolution of the Central Committee of the CPSU and the USSR Council of Ministers of July 12, was responsible for implementing a unified technical policy in construction, improving the design and budget business , improving the quality of design; and also for the improvement of the architectural appearance of cities, industrial centers and villages.

The architectural appearance of the union, republican and regional centers is gradually changing, more and more attention is being paid to their artistic design. When designing a public or production facility, they began to devote two percent of the total budget to it. At the same time, the decoration was created not according to one template, but according to unique sketches.

In the same period, Penza, like most regional centers, began to change. The monumentalists of 1960, undoubtedly, had a difficult task - to change the flat and dull wall space, using illusory, perspective cuts. I must say that they did a lot for that time: they brought the painting to the exterior, introduced new materials, began to use color widely, combine painting with reliefs (both authentic and illusory, pictorial).

By 1970, Penza already had a half or two dozen mosaics, but the most famous, located in the heart of the city on the street. Moskow became the mosaic "Kandievsky Uprising".

The theme of the mosaic panel is devoted to the events of the peasant uprising of the beginning of April 1961 of the year (2-18 of April), caused by the reform of the abolition of serfdom and which became a reaction to the content of the February 19 1861. This uprising was not the only one, but it was the most large-scale such event , along with unrest in the Kazan province in the village of Abyss.

Although the uprising was crushed in 15 days, it left a symbolic mark. For the first time in the history of the country during the Kandievsky peasant uprising, the Red Banner was raised as a symbol of struggle. This moment is captured on the mosaic panel "Kandievsky Uprising".

The initiator of the perpetuation of the largest peasant uprising against the conditions for the abolition of serfdom in Russia was the second secretary of the CPSU Regional Committee Georg Vasilyevich Myasnikov, who invited Moscow artists to Penza. The Moscow “artist of two-dimensional space”, as recorded in the “Register of Professional Artists”, that is, the monumental artist Mikhail Alekseevich Trunkov, became the head of the works and the author of the panel's sketch. He studied at the Moscow Higher School of Industrial Art (formerly Stroganov) under S. V. Gerasimov, A. I. Kuprin, G. I. Opryshko, V. E. Egorova. He is a member of the Union of Artists of the USSR since 1956. Mikhail Alekseevich is known for his paintings in Moscow: at the Slava cinema, with stained glass windows and mosaics at the Molodezhnaya hotel, and mosaics at the Sokolniki training center. The master worked not only in Moscow, but also in Yaroslavl, Volgograd, Pyatigorsk. At the moment his works are kept in many museums of the country and abroad.

In Penza, Mikhail Alekseevich Trunkov not only made the mosaic "Kandievsky Uprising", but also decorated the reliefs of the facade of the former Regional Drama Theater. A. V. Lunacharsky, reliefs and mosaics in the building of the railway station, mosaics in the building of the Aeroflot ticket office.

Along with monumentalism, Mikhail Alekseevich has been engaged in easel painting in recent years. But it also shows the artist’s skillful mastery of the space and the plane, inherent in the monumentalist, enriched by the skill of the colorist painter. The artist does not leave the monumental art, and in 1998-1999 (in 73 of the year!) He worked on the restoration of the picturesque decoration of the Cathedral of Christ the Savior in Moscow, where he created figures of evangelists as part of artistic groups.

Monumental art is not only collectively in content and addressee, but also in execution, it is the result of collective creativity, and not the art of one person. The groups included the author or authors of the sketch and performers. All of them usually remained unknown. It is not by chance that the mosaic was widely used in medieval art - “nameless art”, when “the divine and the common have priority over the individual person”. But if in rare cases the mosaic was accompanied by a sign with credits, few people remembered the authors. That is, the monumental paintings were not an exhibition of individual talents, but an exhibition of generalized talented Soviet reality. The very idea of ​​the primacy of the public over the private, and the mosaic as a form of its expression could not be more consistent with the communist ideology.

Work on the creation of the panel "Kandievskoe Uprising" began in the year 1971. After the approval of the future mosaic sketch on the artistic council, Mikhail Alekseevich Trunkov, like many centuries before him, the master of the Renaissance, began to perform work on cardboard in full size. Initially, it was supposed to finish the panel for the 110 summer anniversary of the Kandievo Uprising, but due to the complexity of the work (only installation lasted about a year), its official opening took place on the eve of the October holidays in 1973.

The works were performed by employees of the Moscow Design Arts Works. The collective nature of mosaic execution (as well as monumental painting in general) is obviously related to the scale and laboriousness of the work - thus, the Kandia Rebellion panel occupies 130 square meters of space.

Monumental art 1960-x revived or created a large number of techniques of performance of works: smalt, ceramic, stone mosaic with different options for masonry, graffiti, reliefs, wrought-iron lattice, stained glass and others.

According to the technique of execution, the Kandievo Uprising panel is a reverse mosaic set, which is used in complex mosaics of a large area. This is a smalt mosaic, which was used to create 6,5 tons of colored glass - smalt, welded in a special way. Smalt, one of the relatives of Murano glass, is colored opaque glass, interesting because, although it is opaque, it seems to glow from the inside. For a long time, Smalt was a traditional church material, which for centuries kept the reputation of the precious, rare and elite. From 1960's, it spread throughout the USSR, including small towns and distant villages. Unknown collective farmers, miners and scientists began to be portrayed in the same technique in which Christ, the Mother of God, the saints, and royal persons were imprinted in the “bibles for the illiterate”. The routineization of the mosaic has become an egalitarian appropriation of a technique formerly belonging only to the elite.

But not only the technique of the performance of the Krandiev mosaic refers us to the past: the composition shows the tradition of writing the icons of hagiography, known from the 9th century. In the center (middle part) there was an image of the saint, around the perimeter of the icon - the stigma, located and “readable” from left to right, representing the history of his life and miracles. In stamps, the plot develops in time: on the left — during the life of the saint, on the right — after his death; but the central figure is timeless. The saint is portrayed as the winner, having overcome the earthly trials, and the stigma is a wreath of Glory.

Because of the technical problems associated with the placement of the “Kandievsky Uprising” panel, two parts stand out, but we see the same general idea of ​​the living composition. In the center of the first part of the panel is a stylized image of a giant peasant, having the illusion of relief, around which a hierarchy of rhythmic relations is built. The prototype of the artist could serve as Leontiy Egortsev, one of the leaders of the uprising. He holds the Red Banner above himself (and, perhaps, the sword) - a symbol of the struggle, and calls on the peasants from the surrounding villages to fight for freedom. The picturesque form of the panel is textured, rich in theatrical entertainment, external effects, but unusually artistic. Symbolically, this is no longer the victory of one saint, not an image of one person, but a timeless display of the triumph of the driving forces of history in a generalized and understandable image.

As in the living icon, we read the story from left to right: the left upper group of rebels shot by soldiers along a conventional line through the giant’s entire body, through the sharp corners of the banner and fire, is connected to the lower group of people lining up shoulder to shoulder. Mosaic because of its features does not allow, like easel painting, to convey emotions through facial expressions (except for the most ambitious figures), it operates with lines and silhouettes, angles of figures, masses, which create an emotional plan.

The artist chooses the climax of the uprising - a clash with the regular forces of the royal army. The moment itself is tragic, and this is conveyed by artistic means: the giant's mouth is open in silent shouting, broken falling figures of the dead, slouched small, in relation to the rebels, figures of soldiers preparing to shoot, the mass of marching create a dense fabric of the narration and emotional tension. Anxiety and drama of the moment are underlined by graphic means: fractional geometric rhythm, irregular rectangles, truncated pyramids, located in horizontal and vertical planes.

You can pay attention to the collage principle used in the panel, sudden drops in scale. Used not real, but semantic scales, as in ancient art. Since the compositional center — the giant — dominates everything, the arrangement of the compositional groups at the focal points of attention along the S-shaped sight trajectory allows the history of all other participants to be seen by the viewer too.

The mosaic is almost invisible behind the greens of spruce and linden. Is only the head and a piece of the banner.

The mosaic itself is traditionally static, but the compositional techniques used by the artist tell her the internal dynamics, despite the symmetrical composition. Diagonals and their intersections, graphic geometric forms based on two unstable triangles (on the sides of the central figure) give dynamism to a static mosaic, link the figures into one compositional whole. The dynamism of the generalized central character is underlined by his figure - a slanting cross in the geometry of forms. It rests on a conventional circle - this is the earth, on it are visible falling houses, a crooked church; its motion is the rotation of the earth; he leaves behind broken chains and attributes of the old world.

The symbolism of the plot with all the large number of derived figures (there are about 60) is expressed very clearly and coherently. Both external and internal human movements are transmitted strongly, expressively and naturally.

Mikhail Alekseevich Trunkov skillfully used mosaic to convey volume, light, shadows and space. Color serves as a defining element, the whole composition is built on a combination of bright local color spots. The basis of the coloristic expressiveness is the large color planes and the linear contours of the figures, the symbolism of color: red is both the first red flag raised and the glow of a fire rising on the ground.

In addition to the iconographic stylistics noted by us in the Kandievsky Uprising mosaic, one can note the influence of a “stern” style, even avant-garde tendencies, which corresponds to the peculiarities of 1970's art, marked by a polystylism, based on the interaction of artistic languages, which led to aesthetics emerging postmodernism.

The simplicity of the plot, generalization with emotionality and sharpness of the most characteristic image, the magnitude of the idea and the historical significance of the topic, the skill of execution made the mosaic “Kandievsky Uprising” an object of Penza’s cultural heritage. The panel is entered in the registry number 5800000701. However, the monument is not enough to make a register, it is subject to protection, but at the moment the state of the panel is alarming. This most famous and most impressive Penza mosaic, from the opening of which in 2016 was performed on 43, quickly collapses: pieces of smalt fall out, right and upper left corners collapse, seams are exposed.

Meanwhile, it is worth remembering the federal law “On the objects of cultural heritage (monuments of history and culture) of the peoples of the Russian Federation”, according to which such monuments “are of unique value for the entire multi-ethnic people of the Russian Federation and are an integral part of the world cultural heritage”. They are guaranteed by law safety. Nevertheless, the panel continues to collapse rapidly, crammed by the restaurant located directly below it.

View of the pedestrian part of Moscow street and the cathedral under construction. Now this building is a symbol of the era ...

Well, the mosaic panel about which we told here, in general, is also a sign of the epoch which has gone and will never return.

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  1. Basil50
    Basil50 6 May 2016 07: 11
    Today in RUSSIA there is a different ideology and it seems like * uncomfortable * about the RUSSIAN EMPIRE to speak or recall something that is knocked out * of the crunch of a French roll *. They survived, on television in all seriousness * the great princes and locum tenens * crawled out. It is striking how easily and naturally they declare themselves the only representatives of RUSSIA. The fact that in tsarist RUSSIA there was famine as a constant component of the life of the peasants was forgotten, like * corporal punishment * and much more.
    The mosaic panel about the uprising is considered only as a work of art. Probably there was a threat of replacement with something else. Today * inconvenient * to recall how our great-grandfathers lived. There were few nobles with priests, but for some reason only they * have the right * to the history of RUSSIA. They didn’t * apologize * for enslaving and robbing the PEOPLE, so they also make claims to repentance. All * these * were almost colonial administrations. Only today they do not want to remember this.
    1. baudolino
      baudolino 6 May 2016 07: 52
      "Hunger as a constant component of the life of peasants" is the reality of the whole world in the 19th century. The Germans did not go to America because of their sweet life. And even more so the Irish.
      1. Basil50
        Basil50 6 May 2016 08: 12
        You are right, but in * Europe * they write about those times very carefully and without nostalgia for * blessed times *
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    2. Rastas
      Rastas 6 May 2016 19: 09
      It's simple. People, reading or watching films about those times, associate themselves with the nobility, presenting themselves in the images of noble princes, counts or merchants. Even our great literature of the 19th century is predominantly noble too. A powerful work about the life of the peasantry of that time was written by Fyodor Reshetnikov - "Podlipovtsy" - which was known in Soviet times, but today forgotten, because it is not formatted, can shake the myths about the splendor of tsarist times.
  2. semirek
    semirek 6 May 2016 07: 17
    It is a pity that there is no panel in Penza dedicated to the Tambov peasant uprising, in which half of the peasants of the Penza province took part - it is hard to imagine how this panel would look like - a paradox-battle of the peasantry with the people's power.
    1. Basil50
      Basil50 6 May 2016 08: 22
      You really the truth about the uprising * peasants * and about the brothers who led the * uprising * write. Do not forget where these * rebels * started * protests *, and about the tortured teachers and doctors, and about their families do not forget to mention. It is a shame when different * green batiks * are put up for a popular movement. Just like in today's Ukraine, the analogy is complete: justification, financing, * ideology *, owners. Only today, Ukraine has other owners, so how many years have passed.
      1. kalibr
        6 May 2016 13: 10
        There is a very interesting doctoral dissertation by Peter Aleshkin on the Tambov uprising. Everything is examined on the documents there and ... dad dad, but the people were there too!
        They give you information, free of charge, on which you can think. And you are a minus. Truly the Bible is right - do not mark the beads ... let them not trample it underfoot!
        1. parusnik
          parusnik 6 May 2016 14: 26
          and the people were on both sides .. during the Tambov uprising .. but .. in the events referred to in this article and the previous one about the events of the largest peasant uprising in Russia in the Penza province, there was a strict distinction .. power against the people ..
        2. Basil50
          Basil50 6 May 2016 14: 48
          An interesting variation, * the people * were among the rebels. So * the people * were among those who flogged the peasants * at the stable *, the bar didn’t get their hands dirty, they found those who did * dirty * work for them. In the * Tambov uprising * many peasants suffered from the actions of the bandits, they are also included in the victims * pacifications *. And where * to enter * the robbery of the peasants to feed the bandits themselves? Terrified not only the number of executed * by rebels *, but also the methods of murder.
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    3. Rastas
      Rastas 6 May 2016 18: 33
      Don’t cling to the Tambov uprising. It had nothing to do with the white movement, they were ready to cut the white hats as well as the red ones. The Tambov uprising developed in line with the SR slogans and programs, headed by Antonov, a member of the SR party. The Mamontovites tried to cooperate with the Tambovites, but they refused. the peasants came out with slogans "for Soviet power without a communist dictate" or "Long live Soviet power on the platform of the October Revolution!" Something with the ideal of the white movement, this does not really correlate.Besides, the STK (Union of Working Peasants), which exercised political power in the Tambov region, came up with a program for the implementation of the Socialist Revolutionary law on the socialization of the land, on workers' control and free self-determination of nationalities. does it have to white?
      1. Basil50
        Basil50 6 May 2016 21: 05
        Yes, I actually did not claim to participate in the Antonov rebellion. As for the slogans or declarations of the bandit brothers, the slogans were different, here the goals were as simple as lowing and the same bestial. What these * rebels * were doing did not fit in with the normal psyche. Sadism and fanaticism was the basis of the actions of these representatives * of the people *, this is about the execution and public executions. And of course they didn’t need accomplices, well, not to share the loot, which * they got * including from the merchants with the nobles.
        1. Rastas
          Rastas 6 May 2016 21: 09
          Yes, I didn’t send a message to you. Cruelty was on both sides, and the slaughtered life of the peasantry before the revolution, and the years of the First World War, and the revolution also affected.
          1. Basil50
            Basil50 6 May 2016 22: 29
            I understand that this is a typo.
            In general, those who have what is called * stigma in a gun * write a lot about cruelty in the RED ARMY.
            * Green dads * noted sadism and terrible executions of entire families. Only here, for some reason, their deeds are spreading to the RED ARMY. However, like the Germans today, who * blather * about * cruelty * of the Red Army.
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  3. parusnik
    parusnik 6 May 2016 08: 14
    However, the panel continues to collapse rapidly, cramped by the restaurant located directly below it... Destroy .. not relevant, not a format .. type Soviet propaganda .. This memory is not needed .. Let's create a new one ... Thank you. Oksana is very interesting ...
  4. Neohumanoyd
    Neohumanoyd 9 May 2016 21: 13
    Oksana! Thank you so much for the article !!! I am interested in the subject of mosaics of the Soviet period, and here is your article on V.O. It was a pleasant surprise for me.