// Born in Novosibirsk on October, 25, 1955. Studies at the faculty of Architecture of the Novosibirsk Engineering and Construction College up 1972 to 1977. Works as a teacher of drawing at the Faculty of Architecture of NECC, the art circle at the Palace of Pioneers, the Faculty of Art and Graphics of the Novosibirsk Teacher Training College and the Novosibirsk Art School 1 during 1977-1988. 1986 — creative dachas: «Baikal» (in Irkutsk), Senezh (near Moscow). 1989 — entry into the Russian Federation Union of Artists. Now works and lives in Novosibirsk.

Today Michael Kazakovtsev is a quite mature master. He has gained that necessary self-reliance when the accumulated spiritual and intellectual potential begins to turn into the matter of form in compliance with the creative individuality and professionalism. It should be noted that the artist?s creative individuality was determined by one important fact from the very beginning. He has the education of an architect and the artistic thinking of a painter. Thus, two people seem to coexist in him — an architect with impeccable logic, uncommon precision and austerity of lines and spatial constructions, and a painter with boundless imagination and a desire to realize it in colour. One should not forget about this paradox when analyzing the process of the formation of the artistic style which distinguishes every work by Kazakovtsev in spite of the variety of professional techniques and results of creative pursuit. Turning the viewer?s interest back to the traditional picture, he keeps on surprising us not only by variety, which testifies to amazing inner freedom, but also by the virtuosity and ease with which more and more seemingly impossible creative objectives are set and attained. With talent, confidence and professionalism…

It is the professionalism that is one of the most unquestionable characteristics of M. Kazakovtsev?s painting noted from the appearance of his first pictures up to the present time. He has been the participant of various exhibitions since 1979. Besides the already mentioned professionalism enviable in such a young artist, we can distinguish some other aspects in his early pictures — both those which were developed in his further work, and those which became merely a fact of time and evidence of certain priorities in the initial period. Even then certain genre preferences were defined: first of all, it was landscape (mostly urban) and close variations on this theme, and also still life, interior, and, more seldom, portrait. This did not only allow to convey his own vision and understanding of the world in full measure (this objective was most important then, in spite of the traditional method of its attainment), but also revealed from the very beginning those properties that later on attracted unfailing attention and singled out these pictures from many others at the exhibitions, — peculiar subtle lyricism in combination with very well thought-out composition based on clear rhythms and spatial relations. One was won over by the clarity and precision of the main theme and the portrayal of the poetic side of everyday life. In this attempt to catch the hidden nerve of urban life, to convey the special charm of usual places and objects, he kept to the beaten track of the method in art which was popular at that time. It was a less rough, more romanticized and poetic variant of photorealism with the use of the snapshot effect in the composition and the image blurring to depict movement, fleetingness, and fortuity. But for all that, there was enough artistry, intellectual energy and freshness of perception in his early works that allowed to forget the formality of his techniques. And it was just at that time, according to the artist?s words, when he sometimes made involuntary experiments with materials. He kept these experiments in mind for the time being, and, though they were not reflected in the «official» exhibitions, their real results became apparent later.

With time he moves further and further away from the traditional landscape and the techniques of photorealism. And it happens rather fast. In the effort to create a certain synthetic image reflecting the human state through a visionary landscape which, on the one hand, preserves some real elements of the outward things and, on the other hand, acquires imaginary, fantastic features under the master?s influence, M. Kazakovtsev more and more often uses the techniques of modern painting. By definition of Moscow critics, modern painting practices the so called «fiery» and «spiny» styles, but Kazakovtsev introduces his own understanding into this doctrine.

Michael Kazakovtsev is an artist of a marked intellectual type. This becomes apparent in his wonderfully subtle associations and in the constant elaboration of new plastic ideas. He is attracted not only by the portrayal of commonness, but by the opportunity to give it a certain outlook, to penetrate into the essence of the phenomenon. It is achieved through further deviation from concreteness and the special representation of the illusiveness of life in the picture when the outlines and silhouettes are either blurred, or deliberately accentuated with expressive, bold, bright brushwork. The new space, filled with the haze of the luminous pictorial substance of his semi-abstract landscape visions, is inhabited not only by silhouettes and outlines of phantom buildings and equally really unreal «spiny» bushes and trees. There also exist strange man-like creatures there, who bring to mind Jacometti?s sculptural fantasies, and who seem to have lost their way in the streets of these cities. They are either sliding like dark shadows against the background of the thin lines of tree branches and stems, or sitting near a wrought iron fence of a park like exhausted sad Harlequins, forever watching the elusive dream town fade away and appear again. The world which the artist recreates having run it through his consciousness, calls for new approaches, which have little in common with the usual notions of space and colour. The play on the verge of real and imaginary requires a special vibrating luminous picture surface with a subtle colour orchestration. In most cases it is achieved not with the help of pictorial expression, but with the harmony of flickering half-tints. Melancholic sadness, detachment, poetic forsakenness and loneliness are conveyed truthfully not only from the point of view of colouring and plastics, but also with striking artistry. All this demonstrated the artist?s aspiration for following his own course of creative development.

While following his own way, he was not going to become a hostage to an experience which had been successfully applied once. Consistently realizing his creative conception, he becomes more and more absorbed in the world of abstract constructing of pictorial and plastic structures of the new artistic thinking. The mysterious harmony of rhythmically syncopated geometrical figures placed in the luminous colour space gave enormous opportunities for plastic and colouristic experiments (probably because of the seemingly simple general conception in combination with a great number of variations). Active picture surface, multi-layer texture, the richness of colour hues — these are the qualities which allow us to speak about the topicality of the new plastic approach and prove the consistency of the search for the pictorial stylistics which would most adequately reflect the artist?s creative individuality.

Confidence in the correctness of the chosen way allows M. Kazakovtsev to use more and more new means and opportunities for creative experiments without being afraid of losing his individuality. This work results in the variations of his usual favourite themes: city scenes, bouquets, trams; pictures that continue the series «Life on Land» (peculiar archetypes of the consciuosness of a modern man who is trying to decipher the formula of existence with the help of plastic metaphors); the series «Puppet Show»; compositions united by common technique and beige colour (probably, one more experiment, test of mastery). But for all that variety, we can easily follow the general tendency to concentrate on the solution of inner tasks. The creative rethinking of his own cultural and visual experience and high professionalism give practically unlimited opportunities for interpretations and further development of the artist?s pictorial system. The desire to experiment with big picture sizes or technique and materials (in the «Hunters» or «Old Man and the Tree»), as well as some unexpected associations occuring with it are quite accountable. «Having learnt the rules you will succeed in the changes.» (Shi Tao) But the main thing is that inner freedom fosters even more austerity and orderliness in the choice of means of the realization of creative fantasies. The very pictorial «minimalism» which Michael Kazakovtsev has always practiced both in colour and in the other elements of the pictorial language allows him to avoid «literariness» which is so characteristic of many of his colleagues. It is not necessary for a painter to be «verbose» to express his thought. Meaningful laconicism, clarity and precision of expression are much more convincing. These qualities are one of the strongest sides of Michael Kazakovtsev?s art. The painter has managed to resist many temptations which are dangerous for a modern artist, and has retained his own original self. And this ability «to retain one?s own self» probably constitutes the genuine topicality of modern art.

/ Svetlana Kogan /


Primary exhibitions:

·                   1982 — All Union Exhibition of Young Artists «Youth of the Nation». Moscow.

·                   1984 — Republican Exhibition «Artists of Russia to BAM». Chita.

·                   1985 — 6th Zonal Exhibition. Kemerovo (Kuzbass).

·                   1987 — All Union Exhibition of Young Artists «Youth of the Nation». Moscow.

·                   1987- Republican Exhibition of Young Artists «Youth of Russia». Moscow.

·                   1987 — Collective exhibitions of 8 Novosibirsk artists.

·                   1988 — Republican exhibition «Science and Space». Moscow.

·                   1989 — All-Union Exhibition of Young Artists «Youth of the Nation». Moscow.

·                   1989 — Republican Exhibition of Young Artists «Youth of Russia». Moscow.

·                   1989 — Collective exhibitions of 8 Novosibirsk artists.

·                   1990 — One-person exhibition. Berdsk.

·                   1990 — Collective exhibitions of 8 Novosibirsk artists.

·                   1991 — Collective exhibitions of 8 Novosibirsk artists.

·                   1992 — Collective exhibition of Novosibirsk artists. Tomsk. Tomsk Regional Art Museum.

·                   1992 — Collective exhibitions of 8 Novosibirsk artists.

·                   1994 — One-person exhibition. Novosibirsk State Picture Gallery.

·                   1994 — «MONART». Collective exhibition of Novosibirsk artists. Novosibirsk.

·                   1994 — Exhibition of Novosibirsk Artists. Gallery «Polar». Moscow. Central House of Artists.

·                   1996 — Joint exhibition together with S. Mosienko. Novosibirsk State Picture Gallery.

·                   1996 — «Man in the Space of Time». Regional exhibition. Omsk. Municipal Museum «Omsk Art».

·                   1996 — «Russian Provinces», Moscow, V. Ryabov Gallery.

·                   1997 — «Modern Russian Art from Novosibirsk». Congress Centre. Frankfurt-on-Main. Germany.

·                   1997 — One-person exhibition. Frankfurt-on-Main. Germany. Gallery «Brumme».

·                   1998 — One-person exhibition. Novosibirsk State Picture Gallery.

·                   1998 — «Unknown Russia». Collective exhibition. Leuven. Belgium.

·                   1998 — «Unknown Europe». Novosibirsk State Picture Gallery.

·                   1998 — One-person exhibition. Frankfurt-on-Main. Germany. Gallery «Brumme».

·                   1999 — Exhibition of Graphics on Folding Japanese Fans. Novosibirsk.Gallery «Le Vall».

·                   1999 — «Art-Novosibirsk». Novosibirsk State Picture Gallery.

·                   2000 — One-person Exhibition. Novosibirsk. House of Scientists of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

·                   2001 — One-person exhibition. Novosibirsk. LeVall Gallery.

·                   2002 — One-person exhibition. Frankfurt-on-Main. Germany. Gallery «Brumme».

·                   2003 — One-person exhibition, Novosibirsk. Old Town Gallery.

·                   2003 — Third International Biennale of Modern Graphics. Novosibirsk.

·                   2003 — Ninth Regional Art Exhibition. Irkutsk.

·                   2003 — Third International Biennale of Modern Art. Florence.

·                   2004 — One-person exhibition. Novosibirsk. Old Town Gallery.

·                   2004 — Exhibition «Inner Asia. Northern Version». Khanti-Mansiysk.

·                   2004 — International Biennale of Graphics «White Inter Nights». St. Petersburg.

Pictures are in

·                   Novosibirsk State Art Museum;

·                   Museum of Modern Art, Vladivostok;

·                   Museum of Modern Art, Birobidjhan;

·                   private collections in Russia, Germany, USA, Japan…


·                   2008 — Региональная выставка Сибирь-Х. Новосибирск, НГХМ

·                   2007 — Пятая Международная Биеннале современной графики. Новосибирск, НГХМ

·                   2007 — Персональная выставка «По ту сторону моря». Новосибирск, галерея «Старый город»

·                   2006 — Selectie experimentele vlaams-be dischf en Russishe hedehdaldse grafiek. Frans mastreel centrum

·                   2006 — Персональная выставка. Томск, Томский областной художественный музей

·                   2006 — Персональная, Дом художника, Красноярск;

·                   2006 — Международный фестиваль «aniGma», НГХМ, Новосибирск;

·                   2005 — Голоса территорий. Образы и символы архаических культур, ООМИ им. М. Врубеля, Омск;

·                   2005 — Персональная выставка-акция, НГХМ, Новосибирск;

·                   2005 — IV Всесиб. выставка-конкурс современного искусства Сибири Пост № 1, галерея «Квадрат», Омск;

·                   2005 — Четвёртая Международная Биеннале современной графики, НГХМ, Новосибирск;

·                   2004 — Международная Биеналле графики «Белые интер-ночи», Санкт-Петербург;

·                   2004 — «Внутренняя Азия, Северная версия», Ханты-Мансийск;

·                   2004 — Персональная выставка, галерея «Старый город», Новосибирск;

·                   2003 — Четвёртая Международная Биеннале современного искусства, Флоренция;

·                   2003 — Девятая Региональная Художественная выставка, Иркутск;

·                   2003 — Третья Международная Биеннале современной графики, Новосибирск;

·                   2003 — Персональная выставка, галерея «Старый город», Новосибирск;

·                   2002 — Персональная выставка, галерея «Brumme», Франкфурт-на-Майне, Германия;

·                   2001 — Персональная выставка, галерея «Le Vall», Новосибирск;

·                   2000 — Персональная выставка, Дом ученыx «СОРАН», Новосибирск;

·                   1999 — «Арт-Новосибирск», Новосибирская картинная галерея;

·                   1999 — Выставка графики на раскладных японских веерах, галерея «Le Vall», Новосибирск;

·                   1998 — Персональная выставка, галерея «Brumme», Франкфурт-на-Майне, Германия;

·                   1998 — «Неизвестная Европа», Новосибирская картинная галерея;

·                   1998 — «Неизвестная Россия», Групповая выставка. Лёвен, Бельгия;

·                   1998 — Персональная выставка, Новосибирская картинная галерея;

·                   1997 — Персональная выставка, галерея «Brumme», Франкфурт-на-Майне, Германия;

·                   1997 — «Современное российское искусство из Новосибирска», Конгресс-центр, Франкфурт/М, Германия;

·                   1996 — «Русская провинция», галерея В. Рябова, Москва;

·                   1996 — «Человек в пространстве времени», Рег.выставка, Омск, Городской музей «Искусство Омска»;

·                   1996 — Совместная выставка с Сергеем Мосиенко, Новосибирская картинная галерея;

·                   1995 — Выставка в салоне «Модерн», Новосибирск;

·                   1994 — Персональная выставка, Новосибирская картинная галерея;

·                   1994 — Групповая выставка новосибирских художников, Москва, ЦДX;

·                   1994 — «МОНАРТ», Групповая выставка новосибирских художников, Новосибирск;

·                   1992 — Групповая выставка новосибирских художников, ТОХМ, Томск;

·                   1991 — Групповые выставки 8-ми Новосибирских художников г. Новосибирск, 1977, 1989, 1990, 1991гг.

·                   1991 — Выставка Новосибирских художников в галерее «Полар»( ЦДХ), Москва;

·                   1990 — Республиканская выставка «Молодость России», Москва;

·                   1990 — Персональная выставка, Бердск;

·                   1989 — Всесоюзная выставка молодых художников «Молодость России», Москва;

·                   1988 — Республиканская выставка «Наука и космос», Москва;

·                   1987 — Всесоюзная выставка молодых художников «Молодость страны», Москва;

·                   1987 — Республиканская выставка молодых художников «Молодость России», Москва;

·                   1985 — 6-ая зональная выставка, Кемерово (Кузбасс);

·                   1984 — Республиканская выставка «художники России — БАМу», Чита;

·                   1982 — Всесоюзная выставка молодых художников «Молодость страны», Москва;


·                   Альбом. Михаил Казаковцев, живопись. Новосибирск 2004;

·                   Авторский каталог. Новосибирск, 1990;

·                   «Неизвестная Россия». Групповая выставка. Лёвен, Бельгия, 1989;

·                   Четвёртая Международная Биеннале современного искусства, Флоренция, 2003;

·                   Третья Международная Биеннале современной графики. Новосибирск, 2003;

·                   Международная Биеналле графики «Белые интер-ночи». Санкт-Петербург, 2004;

·                   IV Международная Биеннале современной графики. Новосибирск, НГХМ, 2005;

·                   IV Всесиб. выставка-конкурс современного искусства Сибири Пост № 1, Омск, галерея «Квадрат», 2005;

·                   Голоса территорий. Образы и символы архаических культур в современном творчестве. Омск, ООМИ им. М. Врубеля, 2005.


·                   Новосибирская картинная галерея

·                   Музей современного искусства, Владивосток

·                   Музей современного искусства, Биробиджан

·                   частные собрания России, Германии, США, Японии