"Geometry of Nonsense"

works by Yuri Vashenko

1st June – 10th July

Open 11am - 5pm; Monday - Saturday, most days

(scroll to the bottom of the page to see dates when the exhibition is closed)

Please call in advance to check or if you would like to see the exhibition outside these hours. 

Pushkin House invites you to opening of Geometry of Nonsense: an exhibition of drawings and etchings by Yuri Vashenko, Russia’s leading illustrator of Alice in Wonderland, and Alice Through the Looking Glass responding to the original illustrations for both books, by John Tenniel.

Artist and anglophile Yuri Vashenko describes the works as a 'graphic commentary' to Tenniel's illustrations that were created in close collaboration with Lewis Carroll. In these works, Vashenko reveals some of the geometry latent but invisible in the original drawings, and introduces his own. Vashenko illustrated Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass for a celebrated Russian edition in 1982 and 1986 that have since been reprinted. He has also illustrated Logical Game and Philosophical Alice.

Russian culture had a major impact on Lewis Carroll who visited Russia in 1867, two years after the publication of Alice in Wonderland, which first appeared in Russian as 'Sonya in a Kingdom of Wonder' in 1879. The fascination went both ways: there are now more than 30 Russian versions of the book. Some scholars consider that the idea for Alice Through the Looking Glass came to Carroll while in Russia.

Vashenko has been drawn to English literature throughout his life as an artist and illustrator. His work has won extensive awards within Russia and internationally. Among other works of Russian literature, he has illustrated Chekhov.

Yuri Vashenko was born in Moscow in 1941. He graduated from the fine art and graphic department of the Moscow State Pedagogical Institute in 1963. Since 1972 he has regularly taken part in exhibitions in Russia and abroad, and is a member of the Soviet (now Russian) Artists' Union.

His work is in the collections of: the Tretyakov Gallery, the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, the Fine Art Museums of Tyumen, Murmansk, Novosibirsk as well as in private Russian and international collections.

This is Vashenko's first exhibition in the UK. The exhibition runs until the 10th July, with an accompanying programme of events that runs beyond this date, since the work will still be accessible in the evenings until the end of July.

2nd June

In conversation: artist Yuri Vashenko and Liza Dimbleby. READ MORE & BOOK

16th June

Growing up in Wonderland:  Daria Kulesh and Marina Osman explore the ambiguous wonderland of their Soviet childhood through  song. READ MORE & BOOK

18th July 

'Alice Grows Up: Russian Emigrees and the Making of a Style Icon'  a talk by Kiera Vaclavik of Queen Mary University. READ MORE & BOOK

Screening of ‘Alice’ (1987) an animation masterpiece from the end of the Soviet Period by Polish filmmaker Jan Švankmajer. Further details to be confirmed.