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Church vs. Culture: Archpriest of the Arkhangelsk diocese called the exhibition of paintings of well-known artists in the Museum of Fine Arts pornographic

The head of the Missionary Department of the Arkhangelsk diocese, Archpriest Evgeny Sokolov called the exhibition at the Museum of Fine Arts in Arkhangelsk pornographic, the news agency "Orthodoxy in the Northern Land" published his statements in the article on March 31. The museum did not expect such a reaction.

This is about the exhibition "Line of Love", which opened on March 14 at the Museum of Fine Arts in Arkhangelsk. It presents lithographs by Pablo Picasso, Egon Schiele, Henri Matisse and other artists from private collections.

"It is interesting to know whose initiative it was to brought it to us and how much it costed the regional budget. Residents of the city must have the right to know the names of their heroes, to know anyone who has managed to mockingly coincide the opening of the exhibition with the beginning of Lent and deliberately place it in the museum building, which stores the old icons", wrote the head of the Missionary Department of the Arkhangelsk and Kholmogory Diocese Yevgeny Sokolov.

In the same article, the priest spoke against the "leaders of culture": "...Moscow director Roman Viktyuk, known for his open non-traditional sexual orientation, was invited to Arkhangelsk at the expense of the budget. They invite and pay money for stage productions promoting promiscuity and sodomy. This spectacle did not last long since Northern people did not appreciate the "genius" of free love – but the next step in our sex education has been made."

Head of the Department of Fine Arts of the Museum Association "Art Culture of the Russian North" Zoya Kuleshova told "7x7" that the museum did not expect such a reaction to the exhibition.

"It feels awkward to justify Picasso and Matisse, their world-famous names, to connect them with pornography in this context. The exhibition has no relation to the comments. It is highly artistic," Zoya Kuleshova said. "The exhibition was held in many Russian museums. It was opened on Forgiveness Sunday. But our society is tolerant: there are those who observe fasting, there are those who do not. But this has nothing to do with the museum.

According to the information on the website of the Museum Association "Art Culture of the Russian North", the exhibition will run until May 10, the entrance to it is allowed to visitors of 18 years and older.


Reclining Woman with green stockings. Egon Schiele. 1917

The Museum Association posted application for the exhibition on the procurement website. According to the tender documentation, the contract price for the exhibition is 450 thousand rubles. Contractor was the St. Petersburg Art Center in Perinny ranks. Its funds contain 14 exhibitions. Schedule of the exhibition of collection "Love Line" was approved by the end of the year. The collection consists of 60 paintings by famous artists. Organizers comment: "The space of erotic art is very thin – overt and intimate are almost inseparable. The model opens up the body, the artist reveals the soul. Erotic work is a mirror of the inner world of the artist, he is equal to himself, and appears revealed as a child. The exhibition of erotic art is a study. Admiration for the beauty and sweetness of the appetence borders with the answers to the deep questions, and recognition of vulnerability – with an understanding of the human – spiritual and physical – Greatness."

Maxim Polyakov, «7x7» 

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