Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square

The Desert of Forbidden Art

Year: 2009
Language: English, Russian
Run Time: 80 minutes

The Desert of Forbidden Art
The Desert of Forbidden Art
The Desert of Forbidden Art
The Desert of Forbidden Art
The Desert of Forbidden Art

THE DESERT OF FORBIDDEN ART is a fascinating look at one visionary's exhaustive campaign to preserve prohibited Soviet artworks by stashing them away in the desert. Igor Savitsky, a native of Kiev, first visited a remote corner of Uzbekistan called Karakalpakstan on an archeological dig in 1950. A frustrated painter himself, Savitsky threw his considerable energy into collecting Karakalpak art. Over the next 30 years, he not only convinced the Soviet authorities of the need for a museum in Uzbekistan, but also got them to fund it. There, 1,700 miles from the watchful eyes of the KGB and state-approved Socialist Realist painting, Savitsky's Karakalpakstan State Art Museum procured an eclectic collection by avant-garde artists who remained true to their visions, in the face of overwhelming odds. By the time of his death in 1984, Savitsky had amassed an astonishing 40,000 forbidden artworks. The collection remains threatened today by everyone from Islamic fundamentalists to art profiteers. (In English and Russian with subtitles) – B.B.

CIFF34 Screenings

Thursday, March 25, 2010 at 7:30 PM

Saturday, March 27, 2010 at 9:30 AM

Sunday, March 28, 2010 at 11:50 AM

Amanda Pope, Tchavdar Georgiev

Amanda Pope is an Associate Professor at USC's School of Cinematic Arts. She has a 20-year background in writing, producing, directing, and editing documentary, dramatic, and advocacy programs. Tchavdar Georgiev is a graduate of USC. He has edited a number of award-winning fiction and non-fiction films.

Amanda Pope: "The Legend of Pancho Barnes and the Happy Bottom Riding Club" (2009), THE DESERT OF FORBIDDEN ART (2009); Tchevdar Georgiev: THE DESERT OF FORBIDDEN ART (2009)

Amanda Pope, Tchavdar Georgiev

Alexander Dolgin, Gennadi Balitski

Tchavdar Georgiev

Principal Cast
Ben Kingsley, Sally Field, Edward Asner, Igor Paramonov

Film Contact
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