The Triumph of Beauty and the Beauty of Grief..
The Beauty of Sergey Kazantzev's sculptures is obvious. But, there is more to that. They are not beautiful to just please the eye. If you look - as Russians say - with «understanding eyes» you will notice that their beauty is manydimensional. On the one hand the striking beauty of the hellenic shape, and on the other - at second sight - the grieving face. Yet, beauty and grief are not unified, but remain purposely and conceptually separated. Each of them stressing two ideals of beauty.
Beauty lets the world and us age, she, however, remains eternally young. With love we also experience pain. Beauty, love and pain. Beauty, love and pain are unseparable. It is not by chance that the faces on Russian icons are at once beautiful and grieving. The lives of God Mother and Son give testimony of these unseparable. Beauty enters the world through us and precedes us. To understand the world you should be aware of the growing wisdom of age in a young beauty. It is, therefore, with intent when Sergey Kazantzev repeats in his sculptures the motif of a young women's beauty and the old beauty of wisdom. Aphrodite gave the world together with beauty and love also the sadness inherited from Zeus, her father.
A sculpture touches our subconscience as no other form of art does. Seemingly understood at first glance; this is, however, deceiving, and dangerous. It takes revenge for this lightness. But, one need not look for a deeper meaning. Created from material and an idea, the sculpture itself is meaning. It is obvious that Sergey Kazantzev is a follower of antique christian traditions, but to him is not the shape important, but what lies within. Why do his human shapes and their inner hollows harmonize in such a way? The hollow into which water may flow or from where flowers may grow. It is likewise problematic letting water flow into the thus formed hollow. The presence of marble, water, plants and human shape certainly lead to a complex string of associations.
Sergey Kazantzev sculptures open up to the world, and are forming a new organism with him. They easily blend into any carefully planned act. This is the sculpturer's belief; he believes in the universal balance of beauty and in the beauty of creation. The recipient should himself determine the extent of this balance. The sculpture is moredimentional; it is difficult deciding where form and surrounding touch. And the decision should be influenced not by the surrounding, but by own perception. To understand the sculptures, their outer and inner forms should be seen in relation to the creation act and it's eternal laws.
Sharif Shukurov, doctor of art criticism
Sergey Kazantsev was bom in 1946 near Moscow in an old Russian town Alexandrov once famous as a residence of the tsar Ivan the Terrible.
In 1960's Sergey Kazantsev studied in Abramtsevo art College, which preserved the traditions of Old Russian art of Sergiev Posad.
In 1968 he entered the Moscow State V. I. Surikov Art Institute and graduated from it in 1974. (Studio of the USSR Academy of Arts President N. V. Tomski, wellknown for his devotion to antiquity and classical education).
After the graduation Sergey Kasantsev took part in many allunion and international exhibitions.
In 1989 his personal exhibition took place in Moscow. For the sculptures, presented in the exhibition, the artist got a Silver medal of the USSR Academy of Arts and a study grant for the trip to Italy.
The sculptures of Sergey Kasantsev are in Hermitage State Tretiakov gallery, museums of Russia, Ukrain, Georgia, in private collections in Western Europe and America.