Basyrov Garif
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   Garif Basyrov was born at the Akmolinsk Labour Camp for Wives of Traitors to Their Homeland (Russian acronym, ALZHIR) in 1944. He studied in Moscow in the 1960s, first at the then famous art school under the Surikov State Art Institute of Moscow and then at the All-Union State Cinematography Institute, from which he graduated in 1968. His graduation project was sheets to Bulgakov’s Master and Margarita, which is now mandatory reading in the school curriculum but in those years was short of a piece of forbidden samizdat. One of his early exhibitions took place in 1970 at the Yunost (Youth) magazine editorial office, another legendary place of the period. Basyrov joined the Artists Union in 1975 and the International Federation of Artists (IFA) in 1990. He died exactly one day before turning sixty in 2004.

   Basyrov’s works are today in the collections of the State Tretyakov Gallery, the State Russian Museum, the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, the State Museum of Oriental Art, the Moscow Museum of Modern Art and museums of Yaroslavl, Khabarovsk, Yekaterinburg, Kaliningrad and other Russian cities, as well as in museum collections of Britain, Switzerland, France and Germany, and numerous private collections in the USA, Austria, Israel, Italy, Poland, Denmark and other countries. His name, known to many today, easily brings to mind his graphic series, such as Inhabited Landscapes, Townsfolk in the Countryside, Outer Space, Apocrypha, Cornered and Trivia.

   Basyrov’s works were shown at the exhibition of Kovcheg Gallery artists in Kuopio (Finland) in the summer of 2009 and were among the Kovcheg Gallery exhibits at artbygenève and Selection Artfair Basel (in Geneva and Basel, Switzerland) in 2010. In the autumn of 2011 his works were included in the Kovcheg Gallery exposition ‘Between Object and Imagination’, staged within the Parallel Programme of the 4th Moscow Biennale of Contemporary Art.

 
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