The BackShop Journal

A Gallery of Thoughts on Arts, Culture and Orthodox Christian Spirituality

  • Viktor Vasnetsov, the Delicate Bogatyr of Russian Art

    When one looks at the frescos painted by Viktor Vasnetsov (1848-1926), one is overwhelmed by the sense of wonder and respect. Catholic religious painting is representational, Orthodox is symbolic, and Vasnetsov's paintings are realistic, but not sufficiently realistic to obliterate the symbolic mean...
  • Cuno Amiet, the Master of Colour

    It has been 150 years since the birth of one of the greatest Swiss artists, Cuno Amiet (1868-1961). He was a painter, illustrator, graphic artist and sculptor. As the first Swiss painter to give precedence to colour in composition, he was a pioneer of modern art in Switzerland. Amiet was born in...
  • An Imaginative Display of Intimacy

    Great paintings do not always depict a dynamic movement, a profound facial expression, a picturesque landscape. Sometimes, great paintings manage to display just an intimate moment, not exciting, not attractive, but painfully familiar. An intimate, private moment shows a person sleeping or waking up...
  • Ilya Kabakov and the Ironic Nostalgia for Soviet Utopia

    Ilya Kabakov and his wife, Emilia, are among the most celebrated artists of their generation, widely known for their large-scale installations and use of fictional personas. They are best known for their ‘total’ installations, which completely immerse the viewer in a dramatic environment. They trans...
  • Amedeo Modigliani and Jeanne Hébuterne: a Tragic Love Story

    In the spring of 1917, Jewish-Italian painter Amedeo Modigliani living in Paris at the time was introduced to a beautiful 19-year-old art student named Jeanne Hébuterne. Soon they began a romantic relationship. From a conservative bourgeois background, Hébuterne was renounced by her devout Roman Cat...
Featured Article
Do We Live in a Dystopia?
The literary genre "utopia" acquired its name from the novel by the same title, published by Thomas Moore in 1516. Various authors have tried to imagine a perfect society and describe it in the form of a project, tale, or novel. Plato's Republic is probably the first known utopia, describing th...
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