The famous artist Petr Gergardovich Dick /Пётр Гергардович Дик (1939-2002) descendant of immigrants from Northern Germany, was born in Altai. Dick graduated Sverdlov Art School named after I.D. Shadr and Moscow Higher Art Industrial School. Since 1960’s he lived in Vladimir. Peter Dick worked in original style - pastel and charcoal on sandpaper. Characteristic features of his creative activity are strong and delicate color combinations, expressive antiquity of laying figures.
- 1939 - Was born in the village of Glyaden, Blagoveschensky District, Altai Territory;
- 1962 - Graduated from the Shadr Arts College in Sverdlovsk;
- 1973 - Graduated from the Stroganov Arts and Crafts Academy in Moscow (formerly Stroganov School;)
- 1977 - Was admitted to the USSR Artists’ Union;
- 1991 - Was awarded the title of Honoured Artist of the Russian Federation;
- 1999 - Was awarded the title of People’s Artist of the Russian Federation;
- 2002 - Died in Worpswede (Germany) being there on a business trip; was buried in Vladimir.
Works by Petr Dick are owned by the State Tretyakov Gallery (Moscow), the State Russian Museum (St Petersburg), Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts (Moscow), Moscow Museum of Modern Art, museums of Vladimir, Omsk, Lipetsk, Nizhny Novgorod, Novosibirsk, Orel, Tula, Tyumen, Yaroslavl, Nashe Nasledie journal (Moscow), the Pinakothek der Moderne of Munchen, as well as private collections in Russia and abroad.
From The Artist's Notebook:
I could define my creative method as “subtracting fortuity” in the name of artistic expressiveness and penetration into the innermost essence of things. The material world becomes dematerialized in the work of art and is translated into the language of visual forms, where light, rhythm and color reign. Thus a certain duality of the real and non-real is created, and that is what I work with. When I succeed in conveying my various impressions of life, blending them into an integral organism of color and visual imagery where all the forms not only agree with one another but are also infused with the single flow of energy, then my painting acquires a life of its own.
It would be an understatement to say that I love medieval Russian art (icons, old frescoes): it invariably makes a very strong impact on me and it opens up to me in accordance with my readiness to imbibe it. The most essential aspect of this art is its inner energy, its focus on the fundamentals of human existence, its overall confessional tone. Old Russian art teaches the modern-day man an important lesson. We are all really missing that spirit of peace that Old Russian masters strived to convey and succeeded admirably. I cannot help emphasizing one more important quality of this art: it expressed not the will of the artist but the revelations experienced by him.
I don’t perceive a graphic picture or a painting as a window into the world, but as an independent, self-contained world in its own right. It is not possible for me to tackle a new project until I have a pictorial intonation for it, which first appears as a sensation rather than a clear vision. Only in the process of my work something gradually transpires and finds its rightful place, acquires energy and role in the overall structure of the sheet. However, when I say “transpires” I mean least of all the narrative aspect and logic of the picture but rather the thinking behind it, that is, the surface and the space, black and white, light and colors, form and color, etc, when a certain energy is created from the interaction of all these constituent elements. I mean the artistic content of a work of art. I see the aim and the meaning of my work precisely in this visual substance which reveals the world to me and enables me to see my role in this world.
A sheet of paper is a whole cosmos, a universe. It responds to your touch accordingly. It reciprocates paying you in kind. You ought to carry on a very sensitive and careful dialogue with the sheet of paper in front of you, or any other material in your hands. This is a living organism with which you need to establish a contact. A work of art begins then to live a life of its own and I never know how it is going to end. All its elements interact with one another creating their own living space of forms, rhythms, colors, light, and this is a way to attain what I call organics, when a work acquires a face of its own and starts its independent existence. If this happens it means that there’s been an organic blend of all the artistic components into a single whole to make them all carriers of this combined energy.
I’m not trying to change anything, or impose anything, but if through my works people will feel just a little closer, clearer and warmer towards each other then I have not lived and worked in vain. Life does not teach anything by definition, it is art that does. Through art people develop a certain system of values. It seems that art teaches us only when it does not try to teach us, when it manifests itself simply, naturally, and freely, thus materializing the artist’s relationship with the world.