Master Konstatin Christoff
It was in 1974 that, in one of my
conversations with Konstatin, came
the idea of having an art exposition
in Montes Claros. It would be an
outdoor fair or exposition, in a
square, on a sunny day. All our
artists would exhibit their art
and handicraft together. It would
be an organized association, but
with no by- laws, no president,
no treasurer or board of directors.
All equal, side by side, no favored
places, no chosen positions. Of
course there would be order but
it would be the discipline of friendship,
of companionship, of consideration,
no one commanding anyone else. What
Konstantin requested at that time,
was that we never register it officially.
It must be a free society, so that
artists could come and go as they
please. Would you like to display
your artwork? Be at the right prefixed
place and time and everything should
be just fine. Inscriptions? What
for? There would be only one office,
that of the coordinator. This was
because some one was needed to at
least answer the telephone and give
information. After all names were
mentioned and weighed, I was chosen
for the honor of being this “someone”.
There was no vote. It was just decided.
story about the exposition isn’t
the oldest memory I have of Konstantin,
since we were friends back when
we were students at the North Mineiro
Institute. Students, passing in
front of his house on Don Juan Pimenta
street, and he giving advice, speaking
to us like a brother. He was a really
considerate guy to the young men.
I remember watching him prepare
illustrations for magazines
From Montes Claros and Belo Horizonte,
once in a while collaborating with
commemorative editions of whatever,
in the city’s newspapers.
I remember him as a doctor, serious
and celebrity, at the city emergency
room in the Holy House Hospital,
a surgeon of the highest caliber.
I remember the consideration that
all the young marriage aged girls
had for him, that big blond guy,
fashionably long hair, Arian style
beard, light eyes, the Viking sailor
look, financially well off already,
in other words, the ideal type of
son in law that any mother would
desire for her daughter.
continues, and Konstantin Christoff
also continues in the history of
Montes Claros. Always admired, always
loved, an icon of our higher art.
Painting, sculpture, drawing…growing
more competent each day. He was
always around and about with theorist
studies, a complete artist, stimulating
the young, criticizing the old and
fossilized, always suggesting. He
was an encyclopedia of the arts
and their worth. How great it was
to observe two great artists at
the same time, Konstantin and Godofredo
Guedes, at Godo’s studio on
Rui Barbosa street. One complemented
the other. Godofredo was the classicist,
academic, the rigorous choice of
color, painting always from left
to right and from top to bottom,
as in writing. He worked like a
modern computer color printer. Godo
would never let the details escape,
however small they may be. Not Konstantin…
a revolutionary, an iconoclast,
no detail whatsoever, no obedient
colors, only firm, quick brushstrokes,
in an almost playful manner. Sometimes
he would do caricature. For Godofredo,
Konstantin was a crazy genius, an
anarchist. But how he admired him!
time passes and Konstantin is always
the winner. Someone greater than
a master. A simple signature of
his can transform an ordinary piece
of paper, an empty canvas, into
a work of art. A phenomenal magician.
Well received, yesterday and today.
With expositions in larger cities
of this, and other countries, he
has become a favorite of the specialized
press. Our pride!
that you are exhibiting at the Event
Square in the Montes Claros shopping
center, I salute you, my brother
and friend Konstantin Christoff!