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      (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov: Leningrad 80s • No.113 >>

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov
ПоПс из ССССР — PoPs from the USSSR

Letter L to Catherine Mannick, Oct. 1986
Text: Hannelore Fobo, July 2022

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection
Harvard University



ПоПс из ССССР — PoPs from the USSSR

Catherine Mannick and (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov started exchanging letters immediately after they first met in Leningrad in the summer of 1979, when the young American law student visited the Soviet Union together with her friend Anna; the correspondence continued up to 1990. I was able to reconstruct the chronology of these letters – all written in Russian – in 2021, before Mannick’s letters preserved in Kozlov’s archive and Kozlov’s letters and notes preserved in Mannick’s archive joined each other at Fung Library, Davis Center, in 2022 more>>. While Kozlov kept the vast majority of Mannick’s letters, his friend chiefly kept those related to his art, for instance double cards with a painted collage on the cover. Numerous photographs from Mannick‘s archive – Kozlov’s vintage prints and slides, as well as Mannick’s own pictures – illustrate the correspondence.

Kozlov's letter presented on this page – letter "L" in my inventory – gives an example of how the artist combined vusual art and text. The letter is not dated, but it must have been written towards the end of October 1986, since Kozov sent Mannick's his birthday greetings (on Halloween), but also refers to her Leningad visit earlier that month (between the eighth and twelfth of October), stressing the importance of her visit. It was one those rare opportunities they had to meet personally: they had last seen each other in October 1984 and would meet again only in early 1990 – this was also to be the last time.

The letter is written with pencil on the reverse of eight vintage prints, each in a 10 x 15 cm format, painted in the bright, sophisticated graffiti art style the artist started developing in 1985, using it for large formats, too more>>. In 1986, he determined this new style as "B(L)ack art" – a script logo appearing on numerous works, including on the first of the eight works.

Five of the works refer to the 1986 visit, when Kozlov introduced his American friend to the Leningrad art and music scene. Thus, we see Catherine Mannick with Valery Alakhov of the New Composers, the first Soviet electronic band, and Georgy Guryanov, drummer of the legendary KINO band. There is also a portrait of Yevgeny Yufit, a well-known painter, photographer, and experimental filmer and founder of the Leningrad "Nekrorealists", whom Kozlov and Mannick went to see at his studio. The other three pictures are from a Pop Mekhanika performance on 20 October 1986 at the Leningrad Palace of Youth called “Козлиный концерт или Введение в Поп-механику” (The Goat Concert or Introduction in Pop Mechanics) more>>. These pictures feature, among others, Natalia Pivovarova, leader of the "Kolibri" band.

Several of the eight pictures also exist in different painted versions, for instance, in Kozlov's album "It’s the Fashion" (1984-1990), where they appear as collages more>>. (The album also includes some other painted prints from the Pop Mekhanika “Goat” concert, one of them with Joanna Stingray, Viktor Tsoy, and Mariana Tsoy.) But what makes the pictures from the letter particular interesting is the additional “CCCP” design – and, respectively, CCCCP and CCCCCCP designs – which are used both as signs and ornaments. The letters “CCCP” on Yevgeny Yufit‘s shirt display Kozlov’s technique of scratching patterns directly into the negative film emulsion, when it is still soft after the chemical processing more>>. In the picture with Natalia Pivovarova, Kozlov applied the letters CCCCCCP to her catsuit – vertically, all the way down, like a button band. Finally, in one of the pictures with Alakhov, Mannick, and Guryanov, the artist arranged the five letters CCCCP on Guryanov‘s coat in a pattern similar to that of the five dots on the face of a dice. Using transfer letters, he placed two words on top of it, ПоПс из, so that it now reads ПоПс из ССССР (PoPs from the USSSR). In the same picture, Alakhov is holding up a “smiling sickle", a symbol Kozlov later used for T-shirts and paintings more>>. It was in 1986 that Kozlov started playing with Soviet symbols, including the letters CCCP, to convert them into positive logotypes – PoPs from the USSSR.

Yevgeny Yufit in his studio, October 1986 Photo: (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov, E-E archive Berlin, E-E-pho-BX14  The scan of the film negative shows the pattern of the drawings mirrored, as Kozlov scratched them into the film emulsion on the reverse of the film strip. Heat is coming out from the teapot, while “CCCP“ designates Yufit. (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov, Yevgeny Yufit, Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part six of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986. Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University.  Kozlov printed the negative mirror-inverted to correct the display of the letters CCCP E-E archival number: E-E-pho-BX14-opc

Yevgeny Yufit in his studio, October 1986
Photo: (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov,
E-E archive Berlin, E-E-pho-BX14

The scan of the film negative shows the pattern of the drawings mirrored, as Kozlov scratched them into the film emulsion on the reverse of the film strip. Heat is coming out from the teapot, while “CCCP“ designates Yufit.
(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov
Yevgeny Yufit
Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part six of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.
Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

Kozlov printed the negative mirror-inverted to correct the display of the letters CCCP
E-E archival number: E-E-pho-BX14-opc

It is plausible that sending his messages to America inspired Kozlov to experiment with the geometricity of Soviet symbols and letters in a systematic way; it allowed to work out his own logotypes. The concept becomes even more obvious in 1988, when he created a series on bus-stop signs called “ART из СССР – ART для USA” ( ART from the USSR / ART for the USA) more>>. The first part of the phrase, Art из CCCP, became the logotype for a number of works from that period, especially when attached to a skull shouting these words to the world.


(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov Art from the USSR, Handbag (reverse), 1988, E-E archival number: E-E-188064, The Kozlov & Fobo Collection, Berlin

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov
Art from the USSR, Handbag (reverse), 1988
E-E archival number: E-E-188064
The Kozlov & Fobo Collection, Berlin

And while Kozlov, with a slight note of self-irony, complained to Mannick about not having the possibility to create large paintings ("I dream of a time and a place where I can paint ten–meter canvases", page 6), he nevertheless found a way to use the tiny space of "Galaxy Gallery", his Peterhof flat, for this very purpose. In 1987, he carried out the painting "CCCP" in a two by six metre format on two adjacent walls more>>. The work is now in the collection of the Tate Gallery.

Hannelore Fobo, 4 July 2022




(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov Catherine Mannick Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part one of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986. Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University.  B(L)ack art, the script at the top, appeared in 1986 on a number painted vintage prints and paintings more>> E-E archival number: E-E-pho-Y066-opc (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (left), page one of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.  Davis Center Collection

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov
Catherine Mannick
Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part one of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.
Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

B(L)ack art, the script at the top, appeared in 1986 on a number painted vintage prints and paintings more>>
E-E archival number: E-E-pho-Y066-opc
(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (left), page one of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

Page 1

Дорогая моя Катя!

Поздравляю тебя с Днем Рождения!

Эту веселую серию фото сделал специально для твоего праздника! Тебе нравится? Хотел, чтобы ты снова вспомнил ярко меня и Ленинград — те впечатления, развлечения, встречи, ту духовную атмосферу, которую создавал для тебя здесь. Другие люди на картинах,  кого ты не знаешь — это наш Halloween, да и все остальное тоже как ты думаешь.




(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov Pop Mekhanika performance, 20 October 1986, Leningrad Palace of Youth. From left to right: Andrey Krisanov, Sergei Bugaev, Ágnes Fehdenfeld-Horváth, Andrey Medvedev, Inal Savchenkov more>> Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part two of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986. Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University.  E-E archival number: E-E-pho-AO26-opc2

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov
Pop Mekhanika performance, 20 October 1986, Leningrad Palace of Youth.
From left to right: Andrey Krisanov, Sergei Bugaev, Ágnes Fehdenfeld-Horváth, Andrey Medvedev, Inal Savchenkov more>>
Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part two of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.
Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

E-E archival number: E-E-pho-AO26-opc2

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (above), page two of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.  Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (above), page two of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.

D Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

Page 2

Мне жаль, что у нас нет официально Halloween в какой-то из дней года, но просто думал, что в Союзе Halloween каждый день! Но как ты праздновала свой день Рождения, как Лондон, Cambridge, как прошло твоя акклиматизация дома?

Я до сих пор не могу открыть себя для будничной жизни здесь, после наших встреч. Нет, конечно, я общаюсь с друзьями и просто людьми, гуляю по улицам, хожу в кино, на




(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Catherine Mannick and New Composer Valery Alakhov Painted vintage print and transfer letters, 15 x 10 cm, 1986.  Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University. E-E- archival number E-E-pho-Y067-opc (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (left), page three of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.  Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Catherine Mannick and New Composer Valery Alakhov
Painted vintage print and transfer letters, 15 x 10 cm, 1986.

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University
E-E- archival number E-E-pho-Y067-opc
(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (left), page three of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

Page 3

концерты, рисую (как видишь) — живу, но все это происходит уже на другом уровне, как будто в другом мире, другой стране — это даже нельзя назвать отчуждением или отвержением окружения, происходит то, что мой мир, мое состояние, мой покой и беспокойства, гармония моей жизни изменились. Мне было очень важно и нужно видеть тебя и говорить с тобой, и я глубоко от всего сердца благодарен тебе за твой приезд. Все




(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Catherine Mannick, (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov, and Georgy Guryanov Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part four of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986. Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University.  The same print, but with a different design, is in Kozlov‘s album "It’s the Fashion" (1984-1990), more>>. E-E archival number: E-E-pho-Y017-opc2
(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Catherine Mannick, (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov, and Georgy Guryanov
Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part four of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.
Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

The same print, but with a different design, is in Kozlov‘s album "It’s the Fashion" (1984-1990), more>>.
E-E archival number: E-E-pho-Y017-opc2

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (above), page four of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.  Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (above), page four of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

Page 4

получилось именно так, как мы хотели и хотя было слишком мало времени, я понял, что ты именно тот человек, кому действительно важно кто Я и что Я – как человек, как личность, что тебе могу довериться во всем и встречу поддержку и понимание.

Сейчас мне кажется, что я слишком много говорил о себе и не успел слушать тебе, если так, то прости меня. Поверь, я хотел узнать о тебе все




Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University
(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  ПоПс из ССССР – PoPs from the USSSR  Valery Alakhov, Catherine Mannick, and Georgy Guryanov Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part five of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986. Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University.  The same print, but with a different design, is in Kozlov‘s album "It’s the Fashion" (1984-1990), more>>. E-E archival number: E-E-pho-Y018-opc2

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

ПоПс из ССССР – PoPs from the USSSR

Valery Alakhov, Catherine Mannick, and Georgy Guryanov
Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part five of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.
Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

The same print, but with a different design, is in Kozlov‘s album "It’s the Fashion" (1984-1990), more>>.
E-E archival number: E-E-pho-Y018-opc2

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (above), page five of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.  Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (above), page five of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

Page 5

и мне было важно это для того чтобы лучше узнать себя и тебя и быть способным что-то делать в будущем. Мы действительно способны помогать друг другу, особенно, если ты чувствуешь, при встречах. И мои перемены, моя гармония с собой сейчас мне нравятся. А вот что делать с творчеством, я не знаю. Мне не хватает поля деятельности, масштаба, негде развернуться именно того, о чем уже говорил с




(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov: Yevgeny Yufit. Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part six of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986. Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University.  E-E archival number: E-E-pho-BX14-opc

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov
Yevgeny Yufit
Painted vintage print, 10 x 15 cm, 1986. Part six of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.
Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

E-E archival number: E-E-pho-BX14-opc

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (above), page six of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.  Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (above), page six of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

Page 6

тобой, вернее не успел говорить, только так слегка пожаловался. Я, Катя, задыхаюсь. Знаешь это гнетущее состояние? У тебя есть возможность вылить свою энергию в работу, а у меня нет. Я мечтаю о времени и месте, где смогу писать десятиметровые полотна, краски, много красок, в огромных банках — они сводят меня с ума. Я могу, хочу, должен выразить себя! Только это




(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Pop Mekhanika 1986. Natalya Pivovarova (right) Painted vintage print, 15 x 10 cm, 1986.  Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University. E-E archival number E-E-pho-AO34-opc (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (left), page seven of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.  Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Pop Mekhanika 1986. Natalya Pivovarova (right)
Painted vintage print, 15 x 10 cm, 1986.

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University
E-E archival number E-E-pho-AO34-opc
More about the performance >>
(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (left), page seven of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

Page 7

действие раскроет меня по-настоящему, иначе конец, все зря, вся жизнь — сон и туман. И никакого облегчения от слов, только еще больше раскаляют — ужас, кошмар — АССА (read the article about АССА /ASSA>>). Об этом больше не могу писать. Потом буду подробнее, в следующий раз.

 Встречался с Андреем и Людой, они передают тебе привет и благодарность за подарки. На днях у Андрея будет День Рождения, вот в этот день мы   

Halloween




(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Pop Mekhanika 1986. Katya Liverovskaya Painted vintage print, 1986.  Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University. E-E archival number E-E-pho-AO23-opc (E-E) Evgenij Kozlov  Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (left), page eight of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.  Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Pop Mekhanika 1986. Katya Liverovskaya
Painted vintage print, 1986.

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University
E-E archival number E-E-pho-AO23-opc
More about the performance >>
(E-E) Evgenij Kozlov

Text on the reverse of the painted vintage print (left), page eight of eight from Kozlov‘s letter to Catherine Mannick from late October 1986.

Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies Special Collection, Harvard University

Page 8

выпьем ликер из B.S. за его и твое здоровье.

Оказывается Андрей уже почти бросил курить, но после того, как я передал ему Camel планы сразу изменились. Вообще у них все идет хорошо.

Видел и Яна, он рассказал, что Маринина мама очень волнуется перед путешествием, стал совсем нервной. Но надеюсь, у нее все будет хорошо.

Моя мама тоже передает тебе привет, она очень хотела тебя видет. Ну устроим встречу в следующий раз.

Обнимаю и целую тебя, Женя.

Halloween

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Published 4 July 2022
Last updated 6 July 2022