GALLERY OF THE 6
The crew of the Sofia City Art Gallery proudly presents its final exhibit for 2019 – the “Gallery of the Six”. It commemorates 120 years since the birth of Dechko Uzunov.
The narrative takes us back to the distant 1927, in which a new artistic space was founded, at the address Turgovska Street №2. Nikola Tanev is the creator who initiates the establishment of the gallery. This notion came into existence after he held his own exhibition in Bucharest, at the end of 1926. The artist was immensely impressed with the space and the conditions he was offered there and determined that something similar was possible at home as well. To bring this task to fruition, he recruits the help of his friends – Boris Denev, Ivan Lazarov, Ivan Penkov, Sirak Skitnik, and Dechko Uzunov. The six artists team up, and as early as February of 1927, the first collective exhibition is held at the “Gallery of the Six”. The new art space in the capital makes it possible for new projects, both of the applied arts and in fine arts varieties, to be realized. Within the very first year of the gallery’s operations, it hosts one of the few, at the time, graphic art exhibitions. Participating in it are artists like Petar Morozov, Boris Denev, Anna Kramer-Behar, Michael Ross, Vasil Stoilov, Vasil Zahariev, Atanas Mihov, Alexander Mutafov, Dobri Dobrev and others. The gallery is also the place where many of the artists would put on individual exhibits. Among the many artists who debuted solo exhibitions are Boris Georgiev, George Papazov, Bencho Obreshkov, Kosta Samarov, Petar Dachev, Ari Kalachev, and Nikola Tanev. Despite the many interesting projects which are manifested within the “Gallery of the Six”, the space operates as an artistic center for only a handful of years.
By relying on Nikola Tanev’s memoirs, along with contemporaneous articles in the press, an attempt has been made to reconstruct a self-contained narrative about the establishment of the space, and how it came to be. The curated material includes works by the six founders, from the first half of the 20th century. Among the selected works are “A portrait of Violeta Yonova” by Denev, “Fallen Friend” by Lazarov, “At the water fountain” by Penkov, “Landscape” by Skitnik, “Karlovo Garden” by Tanev, and last but not least, “Portrait of Ivan Tutev” by Uzunov.
Included in the exhibition are works belonging to the municipal art galleries of Plovdiv, Karlovo, Ruse, Stara Zagora, Pazardzhik Art gallery “Stanislav Dospevski”, Shumen Art gallery “Elena Karamihaylov,” the Sofia City Art Gallery, the Union of Bulgarian Artists and private collections.