Russians Revolution Royal Academy London.

How does this remind you of recent revolutions … sorry … Brexit referendums?

Russians Revolution Brexit : The Royal Academy London. Make of it what you will

Russians Revolution Brexit
Boris Kustodiev ‘The Bolshevik’

At the Royal Academy exhibition ‘Revolution – Russian Art 1917 -1932’ one picture in particular reminded me of the EU Referendum in the UK last year. Russians Revolution Brexit

A little known Russian artist Boris Kustodiev’s ‘The Bolshevik’ painted in 1920.

Russians Revolution Brexit

Power to the people. The heroic and monumental Bolshevik. Proudly waving the red flag of revolution, leading the masses towards the utopia of a communist state.

An unstoppable tidal wave of people force – crushing forward.

The Bolshevik figure representing the ordinary folk and one could also think: their leader and therefore by implication  representing the Bolshevik hierarchy.

Vladimir Lenin

Russians Revolution Brexit
Isaac Brodsky ‘V I Lenin’

and soon after, Joseph Stalin.

Russians Revolution Brexit
Joseph Stalin ‘The Father of the People’

Russians Revolution Brexit

We know from the history books, the resultant Communist state was anything but the Promised Land. Thousands were sent to the Gulags. Millions died by starvation. The state in ultimate control of the community and individual lives. If you didn’t agree, you were shot or imprisoned – many never to be seen again.


How did this remind me of the Referendum? The masses hoodwinked and lied to by the politicians maybe? Statistical and financial distortions, maybe? Golden futures assured, perhaps? The fear factor played to its utmost. Creating …

… a tidal wave of opinion and action, elevating those in power and seeking power with the mandate to take us all along with them – whatever the outcome of the Referendum.

Russians Revolution Brexit

The winners using the sheer weight of populism to justify their actions and now they ride protected, safe and secure, undaunted.

With the strength of those who voted for them as their bulwark against any disastrous outcomes of the effect of their wooing and manipulating the mass of people who were lied to.

Or were they?

Politics and art. Inseparable. A metaphor for today?

The Royal Academy Revolution: Russian Art