Russian artist Erik Bulatov is one of the leaders of Moscow non-conformist art. Combining traditions of Vladimir Favorsky and modern avant-gardism he has created his own style peculiar for blending Sots-art elements with subtle spatial play. His paintings of the 1970s featuring enormous Soviet emblems and mottos against the background of landscape expanses remind of ideological placards, with propaganda slogans besieging any kind of space. As opposition to those hostile cliches imposed by ideology the artist uses ‘free’ poetic words to expand the space and imbue it with inmost meaning.
Erik Vladimirovich Bulatov was born in Sverdlovsk (now Yekaterinburg) city on September 5, 1933. After moving to Moscow he studied at the Surikov Art Institute and upon graduation in 1958 the artist started to relearn and – not without the influence of R.R. Falk and V.A. Favorsky – develop steady independence from the official doctrine of social realism. From 1959 Bulatov worked as an illustrator of books for children. In Soviet times his gifted illustrations (usually created in co-authorship with Oleg Vasiliev) enjoyed great popularity.
Erik Bulatov’s original post-avant-garde style was developed by the late 1960s, through experimenting with a variety of modernist manners. The artist attains powerful social grotesque effects by bringing standard naturalistic landscapes and large poster symbols together....