(09 - 31.07 2020)
An exhibition featuring paintings by Bulgarian poster artist Kamen Popov from the Gallery 88 (Luxembourg) collection opens at the Ministry of Culture-s Sredets Gallery on 9 July. Private viewing will be from 5:00 pm to 6:30 pm. The exhibition will remain open to visitors until 31 July this year.
Kamen Popov (1947-2015) was born on 25 February in the city of Sofia. He graduated from the Art School and later the National Academy of Arts in Professor Alexander Poplilov-s class. In the 1980s, he went to work and later stayed in Luxembourg.
Here is what Professor Doctor of Art History Chavdar Popov shares about him on the occasion of this exhibition:
Kamen Popov-s personality - both in private and public terms – clearly transcends the traditional frameworks in which most artists typically appear. Painter, poster artist, founder and long-time curator of the famous Gallery 88, located in the very heart of Luxembourg, he enjoyed unchanged authority among his Bulgarian colleagues and around the world. Having organized not one or two exhibitions of local famous artists, Kamen Popov made a significant contribution to the promotion of their work in a wide international context. Although levelled under the umbrella of the generalizing term “fine arts”, painting and poster art have different creative starting principles. The rich plastic fabric of the painting canvas, the nuanced figurative suggestions, the fine tonal and spatial gradation of a painting are generally “adverse” on a poster with its laconic and often arbitrary expression, with the decorative treatment of colour, with the joke which is the “spice” of the message. Reconciling these arts is a difficult job and far from being everyone-s. With Kamen Popov, these are two sides of the same medal. Add the vast erudition and broad outlook of the author, and we get a creative type who left a memorable, vivid trail in Bulgarian and European art. The artist-s painting, which is the focus of the exhibition, represents a complex amalgam of the stylistic techniques of Expressionism, of primitive art, of Surrealism. The leading origin is, of course, the individual outlook and the subjective viewpoint of the author in numerous interpretations of different types of portraits, still-lives, interiors, fixed compositions. As a rule, the shapes are simplified and generalized, the colours contrasting, the silhouettes of the figures and the subject props highly expressive, “not indifferent". The tone is saturated and dense, the fabric – varied and in places markedly embossed. Kamen Popov-s plastic syntax, it seems to me, is constructed and developed as a complex result of the “internal necessity” (Vasiliy Kandinski) arising from the impulses of his own temperament, on the one hand, as well as everything he has seen and experienced in the globalized world of modern and contemporary art, on the other. His long stay and the brilliant career he has made in Luxembourg are undoubtedly crucial in the respect of shaping his graphic persona.
Kamen Popov has been presented at the Sredets Gallery with the exhibition "The Poster” in 2016.