Kharis Yakupov: how Soviet artist became the enemy of the Third Reich

Heroes 19/01/20 Haris Yakupov: how Soviet artist became the enemy of the Third Reich

Tatar artist Haris Yakupov was one of the contenders for the destruction. The Nazis included it in the “Search list”, which included people, something does not please the Nazi regime and Hitler personally. But what is a talented artist who never met the führer, could to annoy him?

the Third front

during the great Patriotic war, Soviet propaganda was inspired and motivated and raised the morale of the Soviet people. And although most of the military art of Haris Yakupov wore a nature documentary, his front-line notes they supported the spirit is not worse than the daily reports of the Soviet information Bureau, which detail lists captured from the enemy settlements and the loss of the Nazis.

Road wars

Kharis Yakupov was drafted into the Red Army in the winter of 1940, and returned home to his native Kazan, but at the end of 1945. Throughout the war he was, without parting with a sketchbook and a pencil. First time drawing was not at all, then Sergeant Yakupov started to carve out moments during rest stops or at night to sketch what I saw for the day.

day after Day the album was filled with hurried sketches. Returning to the liberated Katowice local miners walking on the road with sooty faces and sparkling with tears of joy eyes. Three kid cook something for lunch in a German helmet after the expulsion of the Nazis from Oryol earth. Bent over the wounded nurse. Team of dogs pulling a machine gun, and just below the body of the fallen soldier.

Many of the drawings were accompanied by short notes, which after the war helped Yakupov to write a poignant book. At the top of one of the sketches hasty handwriting was written “the great and terrible!” – so succinctly described the artist has first seen the concentration camp “Grossbasel” in Slavuta.

The three surviving albums of the artist – a gallery of Soviet peopleth “issuing” Victory: beardless lad of 16 years-five with the Order of Glory, old Tatar-countryman with completely grey hair and a radiant look, nameless soldiers (mortars, snipers, tankers). The names of many does not specify where-that is, only initials and signed and the title and full name. Most of the portraits could not be saved, because often colleagues sent Haris home drawings instead of photos.

Evidence of victories

With painstaking historical accuracy, the artist recorded the events. The exit environment in the Bryansk forests, and Elec after street fighting (1941), the crossing of the Desna and the Dnieper, battle of village Mendeleva, after the battle of Kursk (1943), assault of Ternopil, a breakthrough in the Lviv area (1944). Then there was Poland, Czechoslovakia, Germany. Victory day Yakupov met in Prague.

it is Interesting that the first drawing the artist made on the day of liberation of elec. On the sketch – prisoner of war gunner. The young corporal without overcoat with a beautiful face and blue eyes, with a wounded right hand and considerably frozen, told the city the roads are mined. The theme of the capture of German soldiers was Yakupov repeated. Wandering to surrender to the Germans (1944) or shape of the tattered, wounded, frostbitten, injured, exhausted and hungry already disarmed soldiers with the caption “For them the war is over” was a good illustration of the broken spirit of the soldiers of the Third Reich. Wrecked planes, wrecked tanks, abandoned guns – these pictures speak for themselves.

Meet and work does not aspire to realism, but improves the morale, not less. For example, a pencil drawing, created according to the story of the Soviet spy, demonstrates how an entire company of Nazis who climbed on an armored personnel carrier, in horror, throwing his hands up in from of the team of two of our riders “Hende Hoch!”. There are works when you look at which is impossible to stifle the growing thirst for revenge: “German slavery”, “Looters”, “Shot”.

son of the Fatherland

In 1942 Sergeant Yakupov the editor wants to gesety “Son of Russia” Mikhail Lukonin and announces plans for the publication of books about the Yelets-Livny operations “Our heroes”. From the artist, as a direct participant in the events, it was required material. Yakupov was not difficult to choose pertaining to that period finished drawings, as well as make new ones. As he recalled Yakupov, he managed to make a portrait of an ordinary Fomin, who at the time of a hot battle for Yelets he replaced the injured commander, he was wounded, but remained in the ranks.

Lukonin has also offered to do some illustrations for the army newspaper. The first image Yakupov has painted a touching picture of the distribution of parcels with gifts from saratovtsev. Soldiers with gratitude assort wool socks, soap, tobacco.

a Caricature

the Second figure Yakupov for “Son of Russia” became a famous cartoon “Retreat in a comfortable position”. On it Hitler, at whose feet flickers Goebbels, negates the phrase “lightning war,” and appends the “retreat to more advantageous positions in connection with in the winter.”

the Caricature was published in the army newspaper in February 1942 with a satirical quatrain editor Lukonina: “As no breach, no matter how plutus,/In the bag you made./Whichever way, neither fight,/But waiting for you one grave”.

a Series of caricatures of Hitler was Yakupov continued. On one tiny the Fuhrer with a bloody hatchet is protected from impending of the huge sickle, hammer and shining stars. On the other – with the caption “coming Soon! Hitler kaput!” dictator in terror suspended from top hanging loop. On the third puts a gun to my head, and a scarlet inscription “the End!” leaves no doubt as to his intentions.


After the stories of the residents of liberated cities and towns about the atrocities of Nazi soldiers at Yakupov ideas for a series of posters. The artist responds to current issues. So there are posters and slogans which do not require comments: “Avenge”, “Arise, great country!”, “Help Stalingrad!”, “Thank you soldier behind the lines”, “Give Berlin!”.

Ladynny interest in the poster “Defend Moscow!”, which actually shows the deployment map of hostilities. On it the black arrow marked direction of impact on Moscow and Tula fascist groups under the command of von Bock and Guderian. Instead of the hands of our counter-attack – red bayonet rifle SVT. It holds tightly in the hands of the Soviet soldiers, who, with a cry of “Hurrah!” rushes to meet the enemy.

Historical evidence that Hitler saw the creativity Yakupov, no. But we cannot exclude the possibility that satire, posters and documentary sketches can assess the Nazi propagandists, headed by Goebbels. Power depicts the truth was enough to turn Yakupov into the list of the main enemies of Nazi Germany.

Faina Shatrov

© Russian Seven

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