January 01, 2003

St. Petersburg in Black & White

Black and White Petersburg, an exhibit that ran this past fall and winter at the National Museum of St. Petersburg History, is a stark and honest journey from the city’s founding to the present.

A mixture of graphic art and photography, Black and White Petersburg is the brainchild of three partners: Ludmila Lipskaya, of Luke & A Gallery of Modern Art in London, Alexander Kitaev, a prominent St. Petersburg photographer, and Julia Demidenko of the St. Petersburg History Museum.

“St. Petersburg is the historic capital of both Russian engraving and photography,” said Demidenko. “The original plan was to show color artworks as well, but eventually we chose to exhibit only black-and-white graphic and photographic images of the city. In both these art forms there is always a pause—whether purely technical or otherwise—before the image is revealed.  This pause gives the artist an opportunity to dwell on his creation. Besides, the duality of black and white symbolizes the spectral, metaphysical nature of St. Petersburg.”

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