‘Avant-garde leopards’ come to Red Square© Aleksandra Agranat
20 July 2016

‘Avant-garde leopards’ come to Red Square

An exhibition of Far Eastern leopard and Amur tiger sculptures has opened at the entrance to the GUM department store on Red Square. The leopards are decorated with copies of paintings by Russian avant-garde artists, and the tigers feature various design patterns.

"Russian avant-garde art is certainly as unique as Far Eastern leopards and draws public attention. This is why we decided to link these two subjects, two decent patriotic projects into one event," said Yelena Gangalo, the general director of the Far Eastern Leopards autonomous non-profit organisation.

Inessa Finkelshtein, curator of the leopard-related part of the exhibition, said artist Sergei Marchenko faced a challenging task — to present copies of paintings by Russian avant-garde artists on 3D sculptures. She also praised the efforts of the Far Eastern Leopards organisation: "The company is working to preserve the species. With time we realised that this work fits into a much broader context — preservation of biocenosis. The importance of these efforts is comparable to such treasures as Russian avant-garde art." She emphasised that the sculptures of life-size wild cats "are not symbols of danger or aggression but of large efforts to preserve the planet."

At the opening of the exhibition, guests were invited to have their face painted and take part in the Wild Cats Parade contest. The authors of the five photos with the hashtag "wildcatsparade" (#параддикихкошек) that receive the most likes in a day will receive special souvenirs — badges and cups. A photo with the hashtag will be instantly printed by a machine next to the GUM entrance.

The exhibition on Red Square will be open until 31 July, after which it will move to Muzeon Arts Park. On 2-3 September, the sculptures will be on display in Vladivostok, where they will be auctioned off for charity at the Eastern Economic Forum.

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