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New-York and Paris 1978 - 1979

Prokofiev had spent his early years as a boy until the age of seven in Paris and in 1978 he had a desire to live there again. He had begun to exhibit his works there and felt that he would enjoy working in the Paris environment. Partly inspired by again living in Paris,  and also very much energised by visits he had made to New York, Prokofiev embarked on several related cycles of work at once. There are a series of stripe paintings, and also sky-scraper paintings, characterised by the use of bright colours. There are in addition new works in graphite on paper and other monochrome works on canvas. At the same time Prokofiev began to explore the same themes through sculpture producing a body of painted wooden towers and a series of wall sculptures.


One day, back in his London studio, Prokofiev stuck a strip of wood to the canvas instead of painting another stripe. His next work happened to be a painted relief, and after that he dispensed with the flat surface entirely. He began fashioning tower blocks and stacked buildings from ready-made planks and sticks, creating organic constructivist sculptures. He nicknamed his assembled miniature skyscrapers ‘splinter-suprematisms’ or ‘space-collages’. These brightly saturated skyline sculptures demonstrate a definite departure from the greys, browns, and masking white works of the 60’s and early 70’s.

Having moved back to Greenwich and with his studio right by the Thames, Prokofiev would scavenge the city beach for driftwood and other washed up objects to use. The boundaries between painting and sculpture were in constant flux as he cut and assembled the wood, shaping the structures further with paint. He resisted calling these ‘sculptures’, using the term only according to strict definition, at a loss for a more satisfactory label.

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