Weisberg’s Drawings | Vladimir Weisberg Foundation


Exhibition Catalogue, 2022

Weisberg’s Drawings

Vladimir Weisberg did not consider himself a graphic artist and did not keep a register of his works on paper, although drawings were part of his practice his whole life. After the 1940s and 1950s, when the young Weisberg mastered the virtuoso, mainly portrait drawing style of Mashkov’s school and then moved away from it, there were few among his contemporaries for whom drawing was an independent art form.

Drawings took on this quality in Weisberg’s practice from the early 1960s. At that time, he was teaching in the studio of the Institute for Professional Development of the Union of Architects of the USSR (1959–1984) and drawing became a useful pedagogical tool. Weisberg’s drawings of the 1960s are distinguished by the variety of motifs and materials. In trying out various techniques the artist aimed to determine his own inclinations and understand what he was capable of. From the 1960s, Weisberg’s drawings focused largely on nudes and landscapes. The exhibition catalogue includes drawings from the 1940s to the 1980s from two private collections and five watercolours from the collection of Inna Bazhenova. The exhibition showed Weisberg’s main drawing genres — nudes and landscapes — which demonstrated that for the artist drawings and watercolours were not preparatory stages for ‘more serious’ works such as paintings but independent art forms. Weisberg’s drawings are an exploration of the boundaries of art, a study of its materials and a definition of his abilities. For the artist they were an opportunity to look from the outside at his own paintings and analyse various forms of his personal perception of space.