Opinion: Exhibition ahead of Minsk European Games reflects harmony of sport and art

Regional news

The international exhibition “Sport is High Art”, which is part of the cultural program of the 2nd European Games, shows a harmony between sport achievements and art, BelTA learned from Director of the National Center of Modern Arts Sergei Krishtapovich during the opening ceremony.

“Our exhibition shows the perfect harmony between sport and art. We’ve tried to combine the beauty of the body and sport, strength, grace, and energy with the beauty of art. Photos that don’t need interpretation seemed to be the simplest way to accomplish that. We hope that the exhibition will become a motivating component of all competitions,” Sergei Krishtapovich said.

Lots of guests of honor were present during the opening ceremony. The number included Belarusian First Deputy Culture Minister Natalya Karchevskaya. She pointed out that the 2nd European Games Minsk 2019 is a most important cultural event in addition to a sport event. “In the age of synthesis of arts we more and more often talk about aestheticization of sport and sportization of art,” she said. “Sport and art are connected by the passing nature of events. Accomplishments of athletes are always translated into works of art afterwards. It seems to me that it is excellent that the National Center of Modern Arts presents the full diversity of sport. I think everyone would be interested in visiting places of culture in addition to sport competitions.”

The exhibition features works by photographers and artists from 12 countries: Azerbaijan, Armenia, Belarus, Belgium, the UK, Georgia, Germany, Lithuania, Poland, Russia, and Slovakia. Over 500 archive photos and modern photography projects are on display in 15 exhibition halls. Apart from that, the exhibition features posters, sculptures, documentary records of performance practices that take a look at sports from various angles.

The hall featuring works by the Belarusian Vadim Kachan under the title “The entire country is our stadium” introduces visitors to 65 photos from the 1980s – the last decade of the USSR existed. The Lithuanian exposition Aqueous features underwater photos taken by Rita Stankeviciute-Kazakeviciene to depicture famous Lithuanian swimming champions as they dive into water.

The exhibition displays photos and video materials from the Belarusian State Repository of Film and Photo Documents depicting the Soviet period (1940s-1970s). Photos and film images of sport competitions, all-union sport days, sport parades, training sessions, portraits of outstanding athletes document an whole epoch when the image of a healthy strong body associated with the youth and strength of the country and when mass sports were part of the global process intended to nurture the man of the future.

The Heydar Aliyev Center in Azerbaijan has brought to Minsk 21 sculptures that were on display at the exhibition dedicated to the 1st European Games. They are showcased in a separate hall. “We are happy to showcase the sculptures in Minsk,” said Khanlar Fatiyev, a member of the Azerbaijani parliament, president of the Azerbaijan Swimming Federation. “We hope that this tradition – the organization of exhibition projects during games – will be continued by other countries.”

The exhibition will stay open through 4 August. It is part of the large-scale project “European Games – European Art” which also includes an exposition by Belarusian artists “Kazimir Malevich and the 21st Century”. The exposition will kick off at 47 Nezavisimosti Avenue, Minsk on 14 June.


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