Lika Yanko (1928-2001) and Genko Genkov (1923-2006) are two Bulgarian artists who ventured into the art scene at a time of dramatic changes. Two artists, who, in an age of incessant compromising, never gave up their beliefs, both of them finding their own truth in art in their own individual ways. Genko – expressively and exultantly and Lika – in a relaxed in-depth manner.
During the 1950’s Lika and Genko stayed close to one another in terms of style, creating landscapes, whose colours and form do not stick to the prescriptive norm of socialist realism. Later, during the 1960’s, they gradually start heading in opposite directions, Lika’s white canvases standing in contrast with Genko’s explosions of colour. All of this culminates in his almost abstract landscapes and her mythological-cum-poetic compositions. Side by side display of their works allows the viewer to trace the intrinsic similarity between them. Lika relies on linearity to transform the medieval Christian Orthodox style of icon-painting, while Genko ferociously interprets its iconic colourfulness.
The “Lika and Genko” exhibition is an attempt to reveal the main directions in two artists’ journeys to their own selves. The choices they made as human beings and artists prove that getting to the end of the road to divinity invariably involves passing through the gate of freedom.
The exhibition was organized in cooperation with theNational Art Gallery, the Varna City Art Gallery, the Sliven City Art Gallery, the Kurdzhali City Art Gallery and private collectors.
Curator: Krassimir Iliev