First American Exhibit at the Hermitage

The world-famous Hermitage Museum of St. Petersburg, Russia, invited Tim Holmes to present a one-person exhibit of his art— the first such invitation to an American artist in the museum’s 200-year history according to authorities at the Hermitage.

The long voyage from Helena to St. Petersburg began when Russian art enthusiast Tanya Kosminina, traveling in the U.S., saw Tim’s exhibit entitled “The Creative Process” at the Frye Art Museum in Seattle in 1991. She later wrote to Tim, asked him for some photos of his work, and showed them to officials at the Hermitage.

The exhibit was entitled An Emergency of Joy, and featured 30 sculptures and four Metaphysical Maps, including pieces created for the exhibit. The exhibit expresses the fine edge between the sublime and the unfathomable, between beauty and terror, between what is precious and what is too big to comprehend. Human struggle is the theme: the struggle for survival, for fulfillment, for meaning. "Sculptures by Tim Holmes deserve being displayed in the best museums of the world," commented the Hermitage Director, Mikhail Piotrovsky.

An Emergency of Joy was installed in the canal-spanning entryway to the court of Catherine the Great in Nov. 1993 and held over into 1994 to allow Vice President and Mrs. Gore to have a private tour. The Hermitage, begun in the 1700s, with 350 rooms spread throughout five former palaces, houses the world's greatest art collection and the place itself is a cultural mecca. Three of Tim's sculptures remain on display at the Hermitage where he shares the honor with Rockwell Kent of being the only Americans represented among the 3,000,000 works in the permanent collection.

“Tim Holmes is just starting his creative journey as an artist...but he has already achieved the maturity and originality of a master.”

…“Of Course the artist had Rodin as a starting point, but he interpreted the form in a more elegant and refined way.”

… “I believe our discovery of this searching sculptor is very interesting. It is delightful to find on the other half of the globe…a person whose language is so clear and understandable to us.”

-Sergei Androsov, Director of Modern Painting and Sculpture, Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia, An Emergency of Joy catalog essay, Nov., 1993

Read complete catalog essay by Androsov

See the Hermitage art work page

Copyright © 2007 Holmes Studio