March 30, 2020

These days, people and artworks partake of the same fate. This painting, by Yakov Romas, is stranded in Duluth due to the coronavirus impact. TMORA’s “Art in Conflict” exhibition on loan to the Tweed Museum is closed, and there is no way, at this point, to bring the collection back. Museums across the country are on pause. In silent galleries, paintings hang unappreciated and lonely. But no matter what, our art is safe in the Tweed storage — until our museum reopens and we can schedule the delivery from Duluth to Minneapolis.

This work is one of several excellent industrial scapes by Yakov Romas, gifted to TMORA in 2017. Thank you, dear donor! They are small works and do not make big claims, but they are simply gorgeous. One would expect a Soviet artist to romanticize Soviet industrial achievement. Well, there is a little bit of that, but mostly it is about the beauty of bleak, harsh, and geometric industriality mixing with the soft tenderness of air and steam, and the sky.

-Dr. Masha Zavialova, Chief Curator & Head of Collections, The Museum of Russian Art

Yakov Romas. Study for Magitogorsk, 1956.

Oil on board 13 in x 19 ½ in