Sylvester Stallone is a Hollywood legend. He has been around the track a few times as one of the town’s more prolific tough guys. He has managed to make his Rocky films pay quite handsomely at the box office with amazing regularity and his Rambo franchise made him even more popular. But now, Stallone is to show his more refined side. The action-man actor has been oil painting in his spare time for years and this Leonardo Da Vinci, his self-confessed personal hero, of celluloid will be exhibiting his work in Russia later in the month.
The 67 year-old Expendables actor, and director of the first in the franchise, revealed the news on Good Morning America on Wednesday morning in a interview. The star explained that he was “thrilled” to be able to show off his work which will be displayed at the St Petersburg Russian Museum towards the end of October.
Stallone is currently doing the promotional work for his latest film Escape Plan. Sly co-stars with Arnold Schwarzenegger in this prison break movie. Stallone has said that in his youth, he and his 66 year-old co-star were bitter and, in his words, violent enemies. But Sly said that they both had outgrown their mutual hostilities. The two Hollywood tough guys were partners in Planet Hollywood, along with Bruce Willis, and Demi Moore, since October 1991 so they apparently got over their “mutual” antagonism quite awhile ago.
In the GMA interview, Stallone expressed his excitement about his more cultured pursuit and the chance to show off his work. He revealed that he was very flattered that the museum wanted to show his 40 year retrospective. He also said that it was a “fantastic opportunity” for him and that he was surprised that out of all the talented artists in the world they chose his work to exhibit.
While the film star has always maintained a huge respect for Leonardo Da Vinci, his painting style is, perhaps, more in the style of Picasso. The actor/director/producer, who usually works in the celluloid medium, paints an abstract modern style with oils.
The actor revealed that he would eventually like to focus more time on sculpting and painting. He said that he did find it “odd” that his collection of paintings would all be shown at the exhibit; as he put it, from the beginning “up until now.” But as odd as he might find it, he is still taking time from his busy schedule to be there for the exhibit’s opening ceremony and afterward he will tour the museum’s permanent art collection. St Petersburg Russian Museum holds the world’s most inclusive collection of works painted by the “avant-garde” artist Kazimir Malevich and includes masterpieces by such Russian painters as Ivan Kramskoi.
Sly has said that he feels passionate about his painting. He stated that if one feels passion for anything, that it can “move mountains.” 30 of Stallone’s abstract paintings will be shown and almost all the displayed works have been sold with prices that range from $50,000 up to $150,000.
The Sylvester Stallone retrospective, which was started by the well-known Russian-German art historian Joseph Kublitski, will run from Oct. 27 to the middle of January. The exhibit will be housed in the Russian Museum’s gallery which is located in Saint Michael’s Castle. Stallone could be called the Leonardo Da Vinci of celluloid and, considering the tough guy actor’s awe of the great artist, he would be very pleased. Paintings of Stallone’s that are not on display have been reproduced in the museum’s catalogue.
By Michael Smith