At the age of 102, he entered the Guinness Book of Records as the oldest working professional artist. The last lifetime exhibition was held at the Central House of Artists in May 2007. And now the most complete posthumous exposition of his works has opened in the CHA.
Moses Feigin was born in Warsaw. Three years before the revolution, he came to Moscow and entered the legendary Vkhutemas, where his teachers were Lyubov Popova, Aristarkh Lentulov, Alexander Osmerkin. He became the last student to join the Jack of Diamonds group of artists. A student of the avant-garde, he began with modernism. Later he earned money by painting portraits of Soviet leaders, and for himself painted abstractions and surreal carnivals. Long life, long creative path - endless search for something new, unknown in painting.
"I am still in some kind of search. Sometimes I don’t even know what I’ll do in a moment. The main thing is a constant desire to create something new", — the artist admitted in one of his interviews. He did not like retrospectives, he wanted his latest works to be always presented at his exhibitions. Perhaps that is why his exhibitions have always been small, and today it is so difficult to collect his works all over the world. His paintings are scattered throughout the collections of England, America, France.
Moses Feigin absorbed many styles and trends in his work - Fauvism, Cubism, Post-Impressionism, Expressionism. Also on exhibition are his 1946 realistic paintings - "Annochka" and "Children at the Balcony". He had his favorite characters: Charlie Chaplin, Don Quixote, Jesus Christ. But the theme of the carnival is especially close to him. A hundred years like a patchwork quilt: his paintings are dazzling, flickering, somewhat reminiscent of one large stained glass window.
In "Return" painting, Moses Feigin, touching upon the eternal theme of the prodigal son, dresses all the heroes in fancy dress. He, who lived a whole century, who saw the revolution, wars, who knew the fullness of life, made the whole world a masquerade. The artist's worldview was somewhat consonant with the ideas of Mikhail Bakhtin, for whom the carnival "is like a temporary liberation from the prevailing truth and the existing system, the temporary abolition of all hierarchical relations, privileges, norms and prohibitions. This is a true celebration of the time. He is hostile to all perpetuation, completion, and end. He looks into an unfinished future".
In Feigin's paintings, you can often see musicians - violinists and trumpeters. You want to hear them, not just look at them. After all, it is the trumpet and violin that are the saddest, but also calling, waiting for something music. Each painting by Feigin is a fusion of overflowing life and drowning grief.
Moisey Feigin took his own place in the history of Russian art. And his words will remain relevant for all artists: "You think that you are doing art, but in fact art makes you".