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Home / Art and Culture / Life imitates art: Russian group attracts mock-up masterpieces on Facebook

Life imitates art: Russian group attracts mock-up masterpieces on Facebook

A Russian-language Facebook group that started off as a playful attempt by a group of friends to get through the coronavirus lockdown by recreating art masterpieces using everyday items has become an unexpected global hit.

art-and-culture Updated: May 29, 2020 14:57 IST
Reuters | Posted by Saumya Sharma
Reuters | Posted by Saumya Sharma
Moscow
A view shows a recreation of
A view shows a recreation of "The Hunters at Rest" painting by Russian artist Vasily Perov in Hamar, Norway, in this undated handout picture. Participants of the Facebook group "Izoizolyacia", or Art Isolation, recreate art masterpieces using everyday items, amid the global outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Natalia Eriksen Harvey/Handout via REUTERS(via REUTERS)

A Russian-language Facebook group that started off as a playful attempt by a group of friends to get through the coronavirus lockdown by recreating art masterpieces using everyday items has become an unexpected global hit.

The project - Izoizolyacia - was launched at the end of March, shortly after President Vladimir Putin ordered Russia to adopt lockdown measures to try to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Within a day, it had garnered 2,500 members. Now it has over 600,000, with people the world over submitting their versions of famous masterpieces using everything from vegetables to old clothes.

“It’s a child of today’s quarantine situation, because none of it would have happened without it,” said co-founder Katerina Brudnaya-Chelyadinova, who never thought the idea would become so popular.

“It’s cool content, it’s easy to produce, it’s full of humour and it helps to distract you when you look at those works,” she said.

A view shows a recreation of "Female Torso" painting by Kazimir Malevich in Penza, Russia, in this undated picture obtained from social media. Participants of the Facebook group "Izoizolyacia", or Art Isolation, recreate art masterpieces using everyday items, amid the global outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Daria Lisitsyna/Facebook via REUTERS
A view shows a recreation of "Female Torso" painting by Kazimir Malevich in Penza, Russia, in this undated picture obtained from social media. Participants of the Facebook group "Izoizolyacia", or Art Isolation, recreate art masterpieces using everyday items, amid the global outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Daria Lisitsyna/Facebook via REUTERS ( via REUTERS )

Some of the group’s creations include versions of self-portraits by Henri Matisse and Vincent Van Gogh, Edvard Munch’s “The Scream” crafted from slippers and clothes and Kazimir Malevich’s “Black Square” canvas composed of socks hanging from a towel rack.

The group’s co-founders say moderating it had become a full-time occupation, as hundreds of new art works flood in from across the world daily.

Participants dress themselves and family members in elaborate costumes — or shed layers — to reproduce portraits of the past as well as modern art and movie scenes, sometimes with striking accuracy.

“My husband immersed himself in the role of a Swedish princess so deeply that he couldn’t leave it behind for a while,” said Maria Kigel, another founder, who photographed her husband in the guise of Ulrika Eleonora, an 18th century queen of Sweden, for the project.

(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.)

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