V.Tokarev. Artist's wife portrait, 1961. Study for «At the opening of power plant», 1953
«Lyubov Tokareva-Alexandrovich, Lyubochka, an artist, returned in 1948 to Odessa from Leningrad (Saint-Petersburg) where she had studied at the Academy of arts together with her husband. Our parents were not prone to divorce, they were prone to love and life commitment. They lived together for 56 years. They shared family and art life, raised children, supported parents and relatives in need. The portraits made in 50's-60's are intimate, full of love and softness, filled with tradition. They are an image of a friend who deeply influenced the artist. Artist's wife's critic was very necessary. He used to call her - «the boss».
Of course, my mother was a muse too. She is the one who is depicted in the center of «At the opening of a power plant». She dances there in a red dress. And he is knelt in front of her. She is also a central figure in «The Milkmaids».
In his last paintings his eternal second half spiritually bond with him is always there next to him, reading, sitting quietly in the garden. She never left him, always waited, and he always longed to be with her».
Olga Tokareva, artist's daughter
Mykhail Todorov, Mykhail Bozhiy and Vyacheslav Tokarev
Vyacheslav Tokarev. Portrait of Mykhail Bozhiy and the scetch, 1961.
Oil on canves. Odessa art museum
I gladly agreed when Slava offered me to model for a portrait. The process was painful but the portrait came off very good. Many artists made my portraits but Tokarev's one is stronger and more profound.
«Tokarev's pictorial language is unique, his manner is recognisable. There are not only the best traditions of soviet artistic school but there is his own vision wich is felt in a very tensed expressive color palette when contrasted colors are set in a harmonical unified system melted into the plastics of all painting.
Tokarev prefers historical painting. He is very self-demanding when it goes about understanding the historical events.
The images of heroes are the most impressive in Tokarev's paintings. The historical truth is undisputable. Psychological and emotional characteristics are very individual but also generallised. There is no coincedence that Tokarev has chosen the poet Mayakovskiy as an image of revolutionary upsurge».
Mykhail Bozhiy ,
the People's artist of USSR,
member of the Academy of arts