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Ladizhinsky was a prolific and
versatile artist that lived and created in Russia most of his life, ending
his life in Israel his work during his lifetime, he left behind hundreds of
masterpieces, which were exhibited so far in Russia, Israel, the United
Kingdom and the USA.
Ladizhinsky was a prolific and versatile artist that lived and created in Russia most of his life, ending his life in Israel his work during his lifetime, he left behind hundreds of masterpieces, which were exhibited so far in Russia, Israel, the United Kingdom and the USA.
Yefim Ladizhinsky was born in the Black Sea coast town of Odessa in 1911. The son of a fish salter, he was `discovered` at the age of thirteen and taken to the studio of the famous teacher Barshedsky, where he studied for several years before going on to the Theatre faculty of the Odessa Arts Institute.
From 1931 he worked as a theatre designer, making scenery and costume designs for plays and films. He also continued to paint and draw still life studies, landscapes and portraits, including many of his beloved mother, who was his principal model for twenty years.
From the late 1960s he concentrated on series of compositions: temperas inspired by Isaac Babel`s book, Red Cavalry (1967); scenes based on memories of his youth, Growing up in Odessa (1969-1971); drawings satirising the Soviet system and the lot of the individual, Carcasses; drawings of Roots - metaphorical studies relating to his own feeling of rootlessnes in Israel; temperas inspired by his frequent visits to his mother's grave after her death in 1968, The Lyublin Cemetery, Moscow (1978-1981); and his last meditations on life and personal identity, The Eternal Jew (1978-1982).He also drew series of Flowers (one series in Russia, another in Jerusalem) and Self-portraits, and painted series of studies in color and tone - Light and Shade and Passe-partout (1980-81) - whose affinities to musical variations are alluded to in one of his last paintings, Music. His principal group of works is the series Growing up in Odessa, reveal not only his mastery of color and composition but also his sense of humor (which is likewise evident in the Lyublin Cemetery, and the Eternal Jew series, though in a blacker vein). Street scenes, port life, work, leisure activities, and the ravages of the first world war and the revolution are all portrayed in his lively, memorable panorama of everyday life in 1920s Odessa, once 'The Naples of the Black Sea'.