The European Biennial of Contemporary Art

28 June 31 October 2014

St. Petersburg, Russia The State Hermitage Museum

Boris Mikhailov

The Theater of War, Second Act

Boris Mikhailov, The Theater of War, Second Act, Time Out, December 2013. Photographs.
Courtesy Gallery Barbara Weiss Berlin, © Boris and Vita Mikhailov and © Boris Mikhailov, The Theater of War, Second Act, Time Out, c/o Pictoright Amsterdam 2014.

Born 1938 in Kharkov, Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic
Lives and works in Kharkov, Ukraine and Berlin, Germany

Boris Mikhailov is a Ukrainian photographer. In Soviet times he worked as an engineer at a factory in Kharkiv while pursuing his passion for photography, which he began exhibiting in the 1960s. After KGB agents discovered his shots of his naked wife, he was accused of distributing pornography. He was forced to leave the factory and make a living with odd jobs, reserving some spare time for art. In his photographic series, Mikhailov addresses social themes, using concrete examples to show the state of society and changes brought by perestroika. In the 1990s Mikhailov began to exhibit in the West and soon received recognition from the international art community. Mikhailov has been awarded numerous international photography prizes. He has had solo exhibitions at major art institutions in the United States and Europe, and his works are in the collections of the Metropolitan Museum, New York; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.