Born in 1957 in Dniepropetrovsk, in Russia, Alexander Ponomarev lives and works in Moscow.
After showing it first on the Grand Canal during Venice Biennale 2009, Alexander Ponomarev chose to display in the waters of Vassivière Island its most emblematic work, the submarine SubTiziano. he travel process at the base of this realization is not stopped but find a place to anchor in Vassivière.
Alexander Ponomarev appropriates a military object – one that is dangerous and sly, one that became one of the most secretive and terrible weapons of our times. He makes its periscopes, radars and antennas useless for espionage, puts them in motion, thus creating a rather cheerful and festive atmosphere. The artist takes up Leonardo da Vinci's invention in an homage to the Renaissance man who was at the same time artist, scientist and writer; but he withdraws its main characteristic: secrecy and invisibility.
Painted with vivid colours and named SubTiziano, this work is also an echo to another artist who fascinates Ponomarev: the 16th century painter Tiziano.
Alexander Ponomarev graduated from the USSR Nautical Engineering College in 1979; he then worked several years in the Russian Navy before concentrating on art full time. His works have been exhibited at Moscow Biennale 2005 and 2007, and at Venice Biennale 2007 and 2011. He is one of the major artists on the contemporary Russian art scene.
Emerging from the waters of Vassivière Lake, the submarine SubTiziano first seems like an apparition, like a mirage. But his disturbing presence is real. It looks like it is watching and protecting a territory that has been dedicated to artists for more than 20 years. Between land and lake, it is patrolling in a zone of artistic activity, becoming one of its signals. It proves that contemporary creation can appear everywhere, extend its territory and happen in the most unseemly and unexpected places to assure the power of art.