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VIKTOR TEMPLIN (1920-1994)
Born in Vechenki in 1920, Viktor Templin studied at Serpukov Art School and Nizhni Novgorod Art School, graduating in 1937. In 1945, Templin was sentenced to 4 years hard labour in the notorious Magadan Labour Camp in Siberia for the 'modernist tendencies' in his art. It was during his exile that he met fellow artist Nina Lugovskaya, the daughter of the counter-revolutionary dissident writer Sergei Rybin. Upon their release, the couple married and by 1962 had settled in Vladimir, east of Moscow. It was here that Templin had the first of many works selected for the yearly All Union Exhibition, an extraordinary achievement for an artist who had not been admitted to the USSR Union of Artists as a result of his criminal record. Numerous solo and joint exhibitions have lead Templin's bright and colourful paintings to be included in prominent private and public collections around the world.
Templin's work can be seen as vibrant and life affirming in the face of the monochromatic pallor of every day life during the Soviet regime. Depicting the variety and the vastness of the rural Russia he knew and loved, his landscapes are typically Russian but with universal appeal. Their colour and vivacity display an undimmed optimism and love of life that epitomised Templin and his wife.