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Whereas Perseverance is hulking and futuristic, not unlike a spacecraft, with figures emerging from its flanks and top, Self-Lover is more figurative – at least the lower part of the sculpture is. The upper head area is a towering mask-like feature with a visibly discernable face. It is reminiscent of components of Perseverance in the combination of imagery and distortion.
Here, elongated legs support a dog’s body, tail curled upwards. There is fine anatomical detail in the body but the abstraction of the head area is in stark contrast. The mouth area is scrunched, the nose broad and flat above a bony forehead. The work, majestic in blue, is accentuated with gold lines in strategic areas. It is a powerful, regal sculpture that leaves its meaning, and representation too, open to the imagination of the viewer.
To its creator, “it carries the meaning of love and relationships between man and woman.” While some will have difficulty concurring with that statement, it is a strong sculpture that deftly combines figurative realism with semi-abstraction. Goryunov’s sculptures are unique and distinctly in his own honed style.