1940 Born in Moscow, Russia
1959-1965 Student at Moscow Institute of Applied Art
Renowned as a brilliant sculptor even as a student, commissioned to do pieces of monumental and decorative sculpture in the figurative tradition, the only tradition officially recognised and permitted for public display in the USSR. Many of those can be found installed on various sites across the former Soviet Union.
At the same time, in non-official circles, among intellectuals, students and ex-pats, Prigov became known as a poet, playwright, artist, organiser of and participant in underground avant-garde art shows, poetry readings and sound performances, one of the founders of the Moscow school of conceptualism, a highly imaginative and original multi-media artist whose works were sought after, circulated through Samizdat channels and often »smuggled« out of the country.
When »perestroika« was effected, Prigov started having numerous shows, readings and performances in Russia, the USA, France, Germany, Great Britain, Italy, Denmark, Spain, Switzerland, Holland, Finland, Israel, Poland, Bosnia, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, South Korea, Japan, etc.
Many of his art works have been acquired by museums (among them, the Russian Museum in St. Petersburg, the Ludwig Kunst Forum in Aachen, the Contemporary Art Museums in Koln, the Duren Papier Museum, the Kunst
Museum in Kiel, Musee d’Art Moderne in St. Etienne, the Madison Contemporary Art Museum, etc.) and major art collectors, both private and corporate.
Series of Prigov’s prints have been put out by leading German printers (Griffelkunst in Hamburg, Domberger Printhause in Stuttgart and Rommerskirchen’s Signatura in Bonn).
A substantial number of his early pieces of monumental sculpture can be found installed in many cities of the former Soviet Union; some of the smaller pieces can also be found in the Gori Collection in Prato, Italy.
He is a winner of the German Academy of Art (DAAD) Prize in the area of visual art.
As a leading figure in contemporary Russian literature and art, Prigov is a frequent guest at universities across the world. He appeared before the audiences of most of the major universities of Europe and America, including Oxford, Cambridge, Yale, Harvard, Stanford, Berkeley, Universities of London, Berlin, Munich, Vienna, Milan, Amsterdam, Geneva, Stockholm, Copenhagen, etc.
Prigov’s writings - poetry, texts, plays, novels, essays on various aspects of literature, art and culture -- have been published in Russia, Germany, the USA, Great Britain, France, Austria, Italy, Spain, the Netherlands, Finland, Sweden, Bulgaria, Poland, Hungary, Serbia, South Korea, China, Japan. He is a winner of the Pushkin Prize and Pasternak Prize for poetry. A publication of his 24-volume Collection of Works has been launched by the Wiener Slawistischer Almanach in Austria. His plays have been staged in Russia, the Netherlans and Germany. He is the head of the Seminar on the Relationship of the Verbal and the Visual in Contemporary Culture at Russian State Humanities University in Moscow.
Prigov’s face is familiar to the Russian public not only from the photographs on the cover on his books and in literary, political and art magazines, but also from his frequent appearances on the national TV, as well as from his three roles in recent films by A. Gherman and P. Loungin.