Лого на Софийска Градска Художествена Галерия
Анимация по време на зареждане

DIALOGUES WITH TIME Paintings from the Sofia City Art Gallery collection dating from the mid-20th century through the beginning of the 21st century

09 April 2009 - 26 April 2009

This exhibition is part of the “Sofia Days in Moscow” initiative seeking to present Bulgarian art in Moscow. 
The exhibition, featuring more than 80 paintings by 46 Bulgarian artists, is a showcase of the Sofia City Art Gallery collection. Works included in the exhibition date from the mid-20th century through the beginning of the 21st century. They give an idea of the spirit of the time they were created in, as well as of the artistic trends and changes in Bulgarian art.

The exhibition features the works of prominent artists such as Ivan Nenov, Dechko Uzunov, Vera Nedkova, Vassil Barakov, Stoyan Sotirov, KIril Petrov, who studied in Munich, Paris, Vienna and whose artistic career started before World War II to be continued after the war ended. Their works, as well as those of applied artists having worked in the 1920’s, 1930’s and the early 1940’s provided the basis and inspiration for the generation of artists whose career started in the 1960’s, namely Svetlin Rousev, Ivan Kirkov, Yoan Leviev, Dimiter Kirov, Georgi Bozhilov, Genko Genkov, Georgi Baev, Alexander Petrov, Magda Abazova, Peter Dochev, Ivan Voukadinov, Lika Yanko. The latter generation brought painting back to prominence in the Bulgarian art scene leading the way for many decades through its works and truly distinctive artistic approaches. 

The trends set by the generations to follow are presented in the works of Nikolai Maistorov, Ivan Dimov, Dimiter Bouyukliyski, Toma Trifonovski, Hristo Simeonov, Dimiter Kazakov-Neron, Yordan Katsamounski, Dinko Stoev, Sasho Stoitsov, Milko Bozhkov, Andrei Daniel, Svilen Blazhev, Ivailo MIrchev, as well as in the early 21st century works of the youngest generation of artists represented by Mihaela Vlasseva, Ivan Kostolov, etc.

ON A SHEET OF PAPER Prints and drawings from the collection of Sofia City Art Gallery

31 March 2009 - 26 April 2009

The exhibition presents 80 prints and drawings by 52 artists chosen among 3300 works kept in storage at Sofia City Art Gallery. Some of them have been displayed in certain general exhibitions, yet such a complete exposition with an accent on the specific features of the two genres hasn’t been set up for more than a decade.

The exhibition reflects different periods of the development of graphic art and drawing in Bulgaria. The selection aims at emphasizing the artistic quality and the variety of technical and artistic means of expression. The works displayed give an idea of the stylistic changes in the development of Bulgarian art from the dawn of the twentieth century till nowadays as well as of the dynamics in the use of different techniques (in graphic art these are dry point, etching, lithography, aquatint, monotyping, woodcut, mezzotint, vernis mou; in drawings – pencil, crayon, ink, chalk, tempera).

Some of the works included are by artists emblematic for the history of Bulgarian art from the first half of the 20th century: Vassil Zahariev, Ivan Milev, Nikolay Rainov, Vesselin Staikov, George Papazoff, David Peretz. What follows is some of the authors who have determined the trends in our art and have given a serious push to the development of graphics in terms of stylistic variety and techniques since the sixties of the 20th century till the present day. The exhibition presents Todor Panayotov, Borislav Stoev, Zlatka Dubova, Anastasia Panayotova, Roumen Skorchev, Peter Chouklev, Maria Nedkova, Atanas Neikov, Hristo Neikov, Simeon Venov and others. The next generations of artists, whose work has been contributing to the enrichment of the two genres, have also been included: Ivan Ninov, Georgi Lechev, Nikolai Maistorov, Svetla Georgieva, Hristo Kurdzhilov, Vassil Popov, Stefan Bojkov, Yavora Petrova, Valentin Stefanoff, Nina Kovacheva, Milko Pavlov, Emil Mirazchiev and others.

Globally and on a Long-term Basis the Situation Is Positive Nadezhda Oleg Lyahova

05 March 2009 - 26 April 2009

The “Globally and on a Long-term Basis the Situation is Positive” Project comprises a series of short videos shot in 2007/08 on the streets of Sofia, as well as a series of digital prints on canvas („motifs”) featuring static images from the said videos.

As a result of its EU accession on January 1, 2007, Bulgaria was granted a full member status. Hence the opportunity to participate in all these „special”, „regional”, „innovative”, „cross-border”, „multicultural” projects aimed at the implementation of “EU norms” and also allowing us to take advantage of a „wide range of opportunities” offered by the EU. 

Our capital, already a „European” one, experienced a construction boom in its efforts to meet „progress indicators”. Buildings of glass and concrete were erected in neglected small city parks and children’s playgrounds, filling the spaces between apartment buildings. 

Even our short, narrow, pot-holed street with hardly any pavement was not missed out in the rush to fill empty spaces between apartment buildings, prompted by the desire to make it more “European-like”. There came entrepreneurial investors, bringing equipment and people of all sorts. Intensive construction work started. Construction equipment roared in the neighborhood. Concrete and iron replaced the green grass. In the midst of thunder, mud and clouds of dust enthusiastic people and machines do their daily bit to build our European future. 

Nadezhda Oleg Lyahova

From Yesterday till Tomorrow. Monuments of Sofia

05 March 2009 - 26 April 2009

The exhibition is devoted to Sofia’s sculptural and architectural monuments as the carriers of urban memory. It features paintings, drawings and contemporary art form works created between the early 1900’s and the present day.

Highlights of the exhibition feature the images of both emblematic and controversial city landmarks. Among the former are the Alexander Nevski Cathedral, the St Sofia Church, the Monument to the Tsar Liberator, while the latter include the Monument to the Soviet Army, the Georgi Dimitrov Mausoleum, the “1300 years of Bulgaria” Monument. There are also the images of landmark city parks, gardens and squares, which comprise part of the building blocks of the city’s organism. Each of the aforementioned landmarks is presented in several works of art created at various points in time during the abovementioned period. This allows a comparison between images of the same landmark, thus revealing the changing perception of the city – starting from the intimate atmosphere exuded by old Sofia, through the monumentality of the 1970’s and up till the present day and the traumatic changes associated with it. Comparison between individual artistic approaches does not only point to stylistic diversity, but also to a variety of personal stances. The interpretation of a specific monument turns into a litmus test for historical change. 

Elaborating on urban memory, we inevitably turn to material culture monuments that are old enough to reflect the attitudes of various generations. Being symbols of the city, they become part of its inhabitants’ DNA, encoding their belonging to the place on a subconscious level. Therefore taking care of those monuments is equivalent to sustaining our own harmonious functioning. Paintings by numerous artists feature the said monuments and this has not happened by mere accident, but rather as part of the constant process of tracing our roots, creating a unique portrait of a city’s population through the symbols that outlive it. 

The Sofia City Art Gallery collection features hundreds of art works having captured the essence of Sofia. Through them the images of buildings, both existing and irreversibly lost ones, live on. They could also serve as a constant reminder of the fact that the destruction of any such monument inevitably destroys the balance of the sophisticated city organism. 

Exhibition catalogue available. Curator – Maria Vasileva.


27 February 2009 - 22 March 2009

Tim Ulrichs is one of the most prominent conceptual artists of the 20th century. Born in 1940 in Berlin, he starts his career as an artist in the early 1960’s, quickly drawing the public’s attention with his actions and manifestos.

Tim Ulrichs’ works belong to a variety of genres: sculpture, photography, collage, installation and performance. His concept of art is simple: to him life is art and art is life. He calls his art works „total art”. His place of residence frequently turns into an art gallery and he likes exhibiting himself like a work of art. He even registered himself in the District Court of Hannover (the city he lives in) under No 1535 in the register of specimens thus proclaiming his uniqueness as a work of art in accordance with the provisions of the law. 

Tim Ulrichs is an artist and thinker considering art to be first and foremost an intellectual act. He focuses on routine repetitive situations in everyday life, nature and language, being taken for granted, to take them back to their original interconnection through his specific thinking and perception, starting off a process that encourages viewers and readers to make sense of them. Tim Ulrichs does not only have the gift of using his intelligence and humour to give us food for thought, but also the gift of captivating us by placing his own self in the centre of each of his interpretations.

The exhibition, organized jointly with the Goethe Institute – Bulgaria, features a selection of the artist’s original work from the Robert Simon collection in the Celle Museum of Art. „His work and activity place him among the most charismatic modern German artists. As an autodidact and an anarchistic and provocative thinker, Ulrichs not only challenged on numerous occasions the aesthetic framework of his own works, but, also, I think, turned all art upside down, giving it a pitiless shake, to head along the path of a new understanding of art.”, says the collector about Tim Ulrichs.

The exhibition features 60 works of art including drawings, collages, objects and installations created in the period between the late 1960’s and the present day. 

An exhibition catalogue is available.


23 January 2009 - 22 February 2009

The exhibition accentuates the importance of space as the major tool employed by artists. 
Space is what the artist faces every time he/she sets about working, trying to overcome it and change it in an attempt to create something new and unique.

Branko Nikolov, Delia Chausheva, Momchil Georgiev and Simeon Shivachev are artists from different generations, whose perception of the world and means of artistic expression are also different. Hence, the exhibition is characterized by the diversity of the media employed – Delia Chausheva participates with drawings, Momchil Georgiev and Simeon Shivachev participate with paintings and Branko Nikolov – with video art works. Each artist chose “his/her” wall in the exhibition hall, where he/she creates a space of his/her own. The result of that is an installation representing a blend of various artistic forms, an installation, built by each artist’s individuality. 

Mr. Branko Nikolov was born in 1956 in Tsaribrod, Serbia. He graduated from the National Academy of Fine Arts, Sofia, in 1983, majoring in Drawing. He is a member of the Union of Bulgarian Artists, as well as of the Association of Fine Arts of Serbia (ULUS). He is one of the co-founders of the Graphic Circle of the city of Nis. He has had a number of solo exhibitions and projects in Bulgaria and Serbia, he has participated in around 100 group exhibitions in Bulgaria and abroad, as well as in biennial and triennial drawing exhibitions in Bulgaria, Serbia, Japan, Poland, Slovakia and Canada.

Ms. Delia Chausheva was born in 1965 in Sofia. She graduated from the Jan Matejko Academy of Fine Arts, city of Krakow, in 1993, majoring in Painting under Prof. Jerzy Nowosielski. She had a second major in Drawing under Prof. Weiman and Prof. Bunsh. She has participated in a number of national and international art contests and group exhibitions, she has also had many solo exhibitions. Works of hers belong to galleries and private art collections in Bulgaria, Poland, Germany, Japan and the USA

Mr. Momchil Goergiev was born in 1974 in the city of Plovdiv. He graduated from the National Academy of Fine Arts, Sofia, in 1998, majoring in Metal Sculpture. Most of his work belongs to the field of painting. He has participated in a number of group exhibitions, art contests and plein air painting events, he has also had a number of solo exhibitions. Works of his belong to galleries and private art collections in Bulgaria and abroad.
Mr. Simeon Shivachev was born in 1970 in the city of Bourgas. Ever since 1997 he has been participating in national and international group painting and drawing exhibitions, he has also had a number of solo exhibitions. Works of his belong to various galleries and private art collections.

The exhibition’s curator is Ms. Rumiana Konstantinova.

DOBRI DOBREV 110 years since the birth of the artist

19 December 2008 - 18 January 2009

Dobri Dobrev’s exhibition at Sofia City Art Gallery is dedicated to the 110th anniversary since the birth of the artist. The exposition includes landscapes, portraits, subject and figural compositions as well as drawings from different periods of his work. The paintings belong to the collections of Sofia City Art Gallery, Sliven Art Gallery and the family of the artist.

Dobri Dobrev is one of those names in Bulgarian art that remained isolated from the tumultuous processes of the contradictory twentieth century. His artistic evolution took a steady and gradual course without any leaps of change and dramatic turns. Although he spent most of his artistic life in the cente of Europe among the dynamics of alterating trends and and tendencies, he remained indifferent to the modernistic plastic way of expression. The broad range of works show Dobri Dobrev’s endeavours to define colour, space and subject matter. What we see in them is the co-existence of colour splendour and light on the one hand with academic modelling of the form, immobility and subject and dimensioanl veracity on the other. The vivid line and expressive shades, the vigorous and expert rendering of the state prove Dobri Dobrev to be an excellent painter. Moreover, the accuracy in reflecting what he saw into his drawings and canvases can serve as a true socio historical document imparting the spirit of the period between the 30ies and the 40ies of the twentieth century. 

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Dobri Dobrev was born on 21st December 1899 in the town of Sliven. In 1925 he graduated with honours and an honorary diploma in painting from the Prague Art Academy under the professors Max Svabinsky, Voitec Heneis, Max Pirner and Jacob Obrovski. Member of the “Rodmo Izkustvo” art society since 1928. Between 1929-1938 he lived and worked in Czechia. During that period he visited the European cities of Paris, Madrid, Barcelona, Rome, Florence, Amsterdam, Rotterdam, Hague, Brussels, London. In 1938 he returned to Bulgaria permanently. Till 1954 he worked in the town of Sliven and then moved to Sofia. From 1954 to 1965 he taught at the Secondary School of Arts in the capital. In 1942 he took part in the International biennale of painting in Venice. He was the author of a monograph about the artist Dimitur Dobrovich, 1957. In 1968 he was awarded the Order of Saint Cyril and Saint Methodius, First Class. Between 1923 and 1971 he set up 50 solo exhibitions in Bulgaria and Czechia. He worked in the field of painting and drawing. The genres he preferred were portrait, landscape, subject and figural compositions. Dobri Dobrev died on 1st March 1973 in Sofia. In 1974 he was posthumously honoured with the “Dobri Chintulov” Literature and Arts Award, Sliven.

BULGARIAN ARTISTS AND MUNICH Modern Art Practices from the Middle of the 19th to the Middle of the 20th Century

12 December 2008 - 22 February 2009

This current exposition is set up to mark the occasion of the 200th anniversary of the Munich Art Academy as well as to emphasize the importance and the role of this city for the development of Bulgarian art. Being a big European art centre, over the years Munich has provoked and attracted people from all over the world – with its schools and universities, museums, theatres and bohemian atmosphere. This is one of the places where the young Bulgarian intellectuals like artists, architects and musicians came into contact with the European artistic traditions so vital for them. A contact which turned into a formative influence for the development of Bulgarian culture and was of crucial importance for its placement within the European context.

The exhibition features a representative sample of 50 Bulgarian painters and sculptors who went through the studios of the Munich Art Academy. The more than 150 works included encompass the period from the mid 19th century till the mid 20th century. Gathered for the first time in such a context the works, supplemented by documentary materials, illustrate the spirit of the time, the link to European art and the willingness to immerse into the spirit of modern culture. Outstanding names from different generations of Bulgarian artists are presented into a chronological order – from the first Bulgarian artist of academic educational background Nikolai Pavlovich, through great figures like Ivan Murkvichka, Yaroslav Veshin, Ivan Angelov – founders of the National Academy in Sofia. Then come the names of Elena Karamihailova, Alexander Moutafov, Elisaveta Konsulova – Vazova, Ivan Penkov, Dechko Ouzounov, Ilia Petrov, Eliezer Alsheh, Konstantin Gurnev, Kiril Tsonev, George Papazov and others. The viewers will also have the chance to meet some unknown authors and will be able to remember the works of the not so well-known and forgotten ones. 

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue.

Exhibition and catalogue team: Anelia Nikolaeva, Denica Kisseler, Adelina Fileva, Nadejda Oleg Lyahova, Anatoli Mihailov, Ilinka Chergarova, Emil Chaushev, Fanchi Atanasova, Irena Gerasimova, Hanelorre panchevska and Simeon Simeonov

In collaboration with: Culture Programme of Sofia Municipality, Foundation for the Development of the Spiritual Values in the Information Society, Institute of Art Studies, German Embassy, State Institute for Culture, Central State Archives, National Gallery for Foreign Art, Art Galleries in Stara Zagora, Sliven, Varna, Shumen, Kazanlak, Karlovo, Plovdiv, Svistov, Historical Museum in Lom, House-museum Georgi Velchev, private collections.

TECHNOLOGIES PLUS ART 130 Years Siemens in Bulgaria

15 November 2008 - 14 December 2008

The exhibition shows the presence of Siemens as a company in Bulgaria in an extraordinary way. The basic historical stages and achievements are linked to the development of art in Bulgaria. There are two reasons for the chosen approach: on the one hand the art of design and aesthetics have always been part and parcel of Siemens growth. In that sense the reference to fine arts broadens the context and adds to the picture. On the other hand, the connection between art and technology is a declared company policywhose expression is Siemens_artLab opened in Vienna in 1996, known for housing Bulgarian authors too.

The exhibition consists of two conceptual and visual parts. The first one concentrates on the chronology of Siemens presence in Bulgaria and its three periods: 1878-1944, 1970-1997, 1998-2008. These periods are visualized through actual company products or photos of them as well as works of art which present its development in Bulgaria from the end of the 19th century to the present day while rendering the atmosphere in the country during the different periods. The second one shows the basic topics of interest and messages of Siemens today: urbanization, globalization, demographic changes,quality of life and ecology. Except through texts, those messages are supported by contemporary works of art – Bulgarian art works from Siemens_artLab Gallery, Vienna.

Among the selected works and exhibits are some from Sofia City Art Gallery, the National Polytechnics Museum as well as works by various Bulgarian artists. The aesthetic impact of the exhibition is achieved through the balance between texts, photos, objects, sculptures, paintings and works of contemporary art.

Curator of the exhibition is Maria Vassileva. Exhibition design – Nadezhda Oleg Lyahova.

With the kind help of: Siemens Bulgaria, National Polytechnic Museum, Bulgarian Post, Multiprofile Hospital of Active Treatment and Emergency Medicine “N. I. Pirogov”, Palace “Tzarska Bistritza”, Municipality of Sliven, Bulgarian State Railways


12 November 2008 - 06 December 2008

Kalina Tasseva is a versatile author who works in almost all genres. She started her artistic career with paintings on the subject of history and the Bulgarian Revival period. Her first work after her graduation from the Art Academy was Levski in front of the Court. Generations of Bulgarians know and keep in their minds the image of the Apostle created by the artist.

What is central to Kalina Tasseva’s art are the large size historic compositions, portraits of revolutionaries and females symbolizing the Liberation. Those pieces reflect the power of self-denial and the willingness for self-sacrifice in the name of freedom. Kalina Tasseva has created one of the emblematic historic images in Bulgarian art.

No matter how engrossed in history and its heroes, the author has always paid attention to her surroundings. Powerful and outspoken, romantic and tender, sad and disturbing, stern and expressive, Kalina Tasseva’s landscapes have been created with vision and feeling. They also depict Bulgaria, a mysterious, magical land pregnant with history, mythology and legends. 

The exhibition of the great Bulgarian artist Kalina Tasseva presents more than 90 paintings created in the period between 1954-2008 owned by Sofia City Art Gallery, theNational Art Gallery, the art galleries in the towns of Blagoevgrad, Veliko Turnovo, Gabrovo, Dobrich, Kazanluk, Karlovo, Kyustendil, Lovech, Pazardzhik, Pernik, Pleven, Rousse, Silistra, Sliven, Yambol as well as by the author herself. The retrospective character of the exposition outlines a rich artistic life going through a diverse and dynamic creaative development. 

Kalina Tasseva was born in Sofia in 1927. In 1952 she graduated in painting from the National Academy in Sofia under Prof. Dechko Uzunov and Prof. Ilia Petrov. Member of the Union of the Bulgarian Artists since 1953. Many times elected on theExecutive Board of the Union of the Bulgarian Artists. Since 1984 she has been a corresponding member of the Kunstlerhaus Union of the Austrian Artists. Bearer of a number of prestigious awards among which Vladimir Dimitrov- Maistora Award, 1974, Zahari Zograf Award, 1975, the award of the Second Tri-annual of Realistic Painting, 1976, Nikola Petrov Award, 1999 as well as some orders – Order of the People’s Republic of Bulgaria, first class, 1984, Order of St. St. Apostles Cyril and Methodius, first class, 2008. Kalina Tasseva’s works are owned by the National Art Gallery, Sofia City Art Gallery, regional art galleries and private galleries in the country and abroad among which are the collections of Prof. Peter Ludwig PhD (Germany), Mr. Hugo Vuten (Belgium) and Academician Svetlin Roussev (Sofia and Pleven). 

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