Ernst Neizvestny is dead

The famous sculptor Ernst Neizvestny died on the 92th year of his life in New York on the night of August 10.
Ernst Neizvestny survived the war and repressions. Maybe that is why he was able to focus his utmost talent to carve in stone sorrow, pain, despair, and a warning about the inadmissibility of repetition of the tragic, terrible pages of national history.

I will never forget the meeting and communication with this extraordinary man and a great sculptor. Kalmykia, July, 1994. We are talking about the appearance of the future monument "Exodus and Return", dedicated to the deportation of the Kalmyk people. Ernst enthusiastically describes the conception of the monument; says that there definitely would be a lotus flower as a symbol of hope and rebirth.
I asked if he had ever seen lotus flowers. “No, I haven’t”, childishly and with some discouragement replied the master. “Then let's go!” And we raced to Tsagan Aman. It was exactly the time for lotus to bloom. We arrived there, got onto a boat, and still had a couple of hours left before dawn (a lotus opens its petals at dawn)... I will never forget the happiness in the eyes of the great master, when he gently took the stem of the unique flower ...
The monument "Exodus and Return" was placed in the eastern part of the Kalmyk capital in December 29, 1996. Many people have visited this monument within the past twenty years...
We remember Ernst Neizvestny and mourn his death. The Earth has lost another great man. I sincerely condole with the family and friends of Ernst Iosifovich.

Kirsan Ilyumzhinov