“What will you leave after you? What will be your legacy?”
For illustrator and muralist Erendaj, that is an open question to us as he reveals the skeleton beneath this soft skinned portrait based on the classical painting of the 19th century. Erendaj says that the painter Ernst Deger of the Dusseldorf School inspired him greatly, and “I had a strange feeling that that very image was ideal.”
The Russian painter completed one painting directly over another here in Penza, and he slowly removed one while the camera recorded its progress. When the images are rolled together for a stop action video one gets a sense of time passing over this figure, who could be from a few different time periods. “I had to choose just an image not attached to modern time or reality,” he says.
Painting on the streets for over 12 years, he says, and Erendaj estimates that he has created over 100 murals in that time period. Now he is wondering about the impact that an artist can make in history – or any of us really. And he shares his manifesto here: “Many people live only for living. They leave nothing after them. What is living – if you are already dead? Other people create … they build houses, write books, draw pictures, create couples and families,” he says before his parting shot “Make history before you go.”