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200 artists making portrait of Nevsky Prospect


They come from different places in Russia, so the project was called ‘Ponaekhali’ (Newcomers).


An unusual plein air, or, put otherwise, a flash mob took place on Thursday in St. Petersburg, as 200 artists from different Russian cities were creating a portrait of Nevsky Prospect.

Every participant of the project was assigned one of the buildings in the city’s main thoroughfare. Later, the pictures will be combined into a panoramic view of Nevsky.

 ‘Nevsky Prospect is a living organism, it seems to be static, but it changes every day. Every time I come to Nevsky I see something new, and it inspires me!’, Olga Sazykina, an artist, says.

Vladimir Gurhinkel, author of the project, explains the idea: ‘St. Pete has always been an attraction. We are sure that it gives the city a lot of energy. Historically, it is a city of newcomers.’

There are no limitations for the artists participating in the project, they can use any technique they choose. The weather, typically for St. Petersburg, was unavourable, with the temperature of minus 5 degrees. This made it more difficult for the artists – but more interesting, too.

Artist Alexandra Nedzvetskaya admits: ‘There is not too much time to get all the details. But it is possible to show the general impression, the light and the dark, the sense of the city, the cold. It is a rather extreme experience working in cold weather, but it is interesting.’

The results of the plein air will be showcased at the ‘Ponaekhali’ (Newcomers) fair on February 14-23 in Expoforum.

Photo and video: St. Petersburg TV channel