Vadim Sidur... Remember visiting a tiny museum on the outskirts of Moscow. It was in the early 90s, about 5 years after Vadim's death. Sidur's art had been banned until USSR started to fall apart and the exhibition I visited must have been the first chance to see his work.
The visit was a major shock. Never before or after have I been so impacted by art. I am saying this, having had the luck to enjoy some fairly decent museums - from Louvre to Prado, from Tate Modern to Metropolitan...
Sidur's face was disfigured by a war wound and some of the works transmitted the horror the author must have lived through. He also touched on the subject of Holocaust. Sidur's "Treblinka" is the simplest tribute to the victims... Also the best.
What stunned me most wasn't the horror and the sadness though, but the strength of his work. The love, the rebellion, the humanity were projecting through the totalitarian suppression depicted by art. I don't know why the simple figure of Sidur's kneeling slave is a perfect symbol of liberty. I only know that it is.
On Friday Russian Orthodox activists attacked exhibition, where Sidur's works were presented. Some of the statues were destroyed. The attackers have been arrested, but let go on the same day.
Russian Orthodox Church stated that the attackers were "provoked". Suppose it's true. Sidur started it. His Slave is an eternal attack on totalitarian ideologies.