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Petersburg Artist Dies in Bali

Published: March 27, 2013 (Issue # 1752)



  • Vlad Monroe as Dostoevsky in Baden-Baden.
    Photo:

Leningrad-born pop artist Vladislav Mamishev-Monroe died in Bali at the age of 43. The artist drowned in a hotel pool on March 16th, but the death was only reported last Thursday.

Monroe was a leading figure of the 1980s, perestroika art scene. The artist’s often controversial works are self-portraits of a sort: he is best known for his adoption of the personas of pop culture icons, from Marilyn Monroe to the Soviet film darling Lyubov Orlova.

Monroe’s oeuvre also extended to artistic, political and historical heavy hitters from Christ to the Mona Lisa to Putin. In recent years, his artistic role was joined by that of activist, for gay rights in Russia.

Monroe, who took his pseudonym from the American movie star who was among his first subjects, looked at each work as a complete transformation into the figure he painstakingly imitated.

“First I copy the face of the person from photographs, change my clothes and stand in front of the camera… And then — click! And for a few seconds, the essence enters my body,” he told Moskovsky Komsomolets in an interview the very week of his death.

Monroe spoke to the Moscow-based newspaper while on a visit from Bali, where he had been living since 2007. He had returned to Russia to launch his latest project, a collection of images from his role as Polonius in a production of Hamlet, at the Moscow Multimedia Art Museum. The museum has announced that admission to the exhibit, part of the larger Fashion and Style in Photography festival, will now be free until the end of its run on May 26.

Monroe will be buried in St. Petersburg.





 


ALL ABOUT TOWN

Saturday, Aug. 2


Gatchina Palace Park Museum will host its second annual Night of Light, an impressive audio-visual show across the night sky. Tickets are 600 rubles ($16).


If graphic design is more your thing then check out Illustration Day, where you will be able to visit an exhibition, attend lectures by professionals and even show experts some of your own work. The event starts at noon at Zona Deystvia, 73 Ligovsky Prospekt. The entrance fee is 350 rubles ($10).



Sunday, Aug. 3


History lovers shouldn’t miss the chance to see reenactments of World War I battles in Pushkin at noon. Besides exciting war scenes, visitors can enjoy live music, historical costumes, an equestrian show and a fancy-dress parade starting from the Moscow gates.


Garage Sale, the popular and growing flea market where nothing is priced over 500 rubles ($14.11), starts today at noon in Loft-Project Etagi, 74 Ligovsky Prospekt. Be sure to get in early to score a bargain. Entry costs 50 rubles ($1.40)



Monday, Aug. 4


Continue the working week with a calm and steady mind with a free yoga lesson at 7 p.m. in the Bukvoyed store at 23A Vladimirsky Prospekt.



Tuesday, Aug. 5


Visit The Romanov Dynasty doll exhibition today, where more than fifty porcelain dolls depicting Russian rulers, and made by Olina Ventzel, will be on show. The exhibition continues through Aug. 31 in Sheremetyev Palace, 34 Fontanka Naberezhnaya.



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