How does art survive in a time of oppression? During the Soviet rule artists who stayed true to their vision were executed, sent to mental hospitals or forced-labor prisons. The plight of these artists inspired young Igor Savitsky. He pretended to buy state-approved art but instead daringly rescued 40,000 forbidden works of art and created a museum in the desert of Uzbekistan, far from the watchful eyes of the KGB. Though a penniless artist himself, he cajoled the cash to pay for the art from the same authorities who were banning it. Savitsky amassed an eclectic mix of Russian avant-garde art. But his greatest discovery was an unknown school of artists who settle in Uzbekistan after the Russian revolution of 1917, encountering a unique Islamic culture, as exotic to them as Tahiti was for Gauguin. They developed a startlingly original style, fusing European modernism with centuries-old Eastern traditions.
Location: The Strand Theatre, Rockland