|Art gallery news||Nikolai Shmatko|
Rafael Shmatko: "Fate of the unique collection of sculptures of the King of Marble Nikolai Shmatko is to a greater extent in the hands of the people in power."
Nikolai Shmatko's stay in Pereyaslav with his unique collection of sculptures has came to an end on a tragic note – he died in the school basement where he had lived and worked for almost 8 years.
"Endless appeals addressed to the authorities at different levels have always remained unnoticed and just outside of their scope of interest. This was simply a waste of time – to seek a solution to the problem at the top as it would always be dumped to the very bottom. Hundreds of letters can be shown but these letters did not solve a single problem," says Rafael Shmatko.
According to the son, Nikolai Shmatko escaped from these problems when he submerged into creative work and was just in the creative process, forgetting about damp and cold atmosphere in the basement.
"Even now it is hard for me to recall how the Ukrainian medicine "worked" for the benefit of the patient, when after chemotherapy no doctor cared about my father's state – he was just sent home without any supervision. It was a total indifference. No one can return to us the one we lost. Besides, we are now facing a still unresolved problem – what can be done with his unique heritage. The collection of works cannot continue being stored in the basement – it is unacceptable. Therefore, we are addressing city mayors – perhaps someone will find this collection useful to his/her city as an additional tourist attraction. It is possible to use it for the benefit of any city, its people and visitors," says Rafael Shmatko.
At the beginning of 2016 Nikolai Shmatko carved a bust of Donald Trump from Carrara marble and made a prediction of his coming to the White House. Saying that the destiny of the 45th American President is determined by God and nobody can change the course of events, he stated that all this is already written in the book of history of the USA.
The art gallery "Shmatko & Sons" was founded in 1985 by the sculptor Nikolai Shmatko. As of today, it contains the biggest collection of marble sculptures in Ukraine made by one author. The author's collection contains about 135 sculptures, more than 80 of which are made of Italian and Ural marble, 300 pictures (paintings, graphic arts), and architectural projects.
Pereyaslav-Khmelnitskiy, 05.11.2020 (photos of Rafael Shmatko)