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``Colour is the keyboard, the eyes are the harmonies, and the soul is the piano with many strings. The artist is the hand that plays, touching one key or another, to cause vibrations in the soul.”

Wassily Kandinsky

Music and visual art have been closely linked since ancient times. Talented composers or musicians, as well as artists, present in their works a certain associative-metaphorical order, reflecting their inner energy. Like painting, music has its own colour, harmony, movement, composition. The building units of these art forms, so close in essence, continue to merge in the works in the collection of the Ruse Art Gallery.

The existence of the collection “Music” has its history over the past five decades, and most of it is inextricably linked with the “March Music Days” International Festival.

The beginning was in the mid-70s of the 20th century with the so-called “March Exhibitions” of artists from Ruse and the country, with the works of, for instance Petar Popov, Vasilka Moneva, Stefan Katsarov, Velimir Petrov, Stoyan Tsanev, Petar Dochev, Iliya Milkov that are in the gallery’s collection. In the next three decades, group and solo exhibitions of Bulgarian and foreign artists have been organized, including Dimitar Kirov, Andrei Daniel, Evstati Marinov, Emin Koc (Turkey), Sachiko Adachi (Japan) and others.

Matey Mateev “Music”

In 2012, for the first time, the exposition acquired the status of an exhibition-competition with a prize fund, and the Union of Bulgarian Artists was involved as a partner in its implementation. Over time, it became traditional in the gallery’s annual program in the second half of March. Ruse artists – members of the the Union of Bulgarian Artists, as well as specially invited authors are eligible for participation. In addition to the works of local artists, the collection of the gallery includes the works of Andrei Daniel, Atanas Hranov, and Susumu Endo.

From 2012 to 2019, the curatorial principle and the conceptual approach played an essential role in the preparation and holding of this popular event in the cultural calendar of the city of Ruse. Changes occur only in relation to the announced themes, with the emphasis on music which stays unchanged. However, the integration of the two forms of art is always there: Entry – Exit / Music – Painting, Tuning Fork, Unsung Arias, The Desk, Tone/Semitone, Melomania, String, and Clavissimo.

In 2021 – 2022, after a change in the status initiated by the Municipality of Ruse, the exhibition became an Exhibition-competition for Contemporary Visual Arts, and all authors working on the territory of the City of Ruse can participate.

Visual art, like music, expresses the inner life of its creator, but has the power to affect our feelings, thoughts and our attitude to the surrounding reality. The collection “Music” is not a finished process. Music will continue to provoke artists, and fine art musicians – a process that has lasted over time without an end in sight.

Maria Todorova

Andrey Daniel


Andrey Daniel

From the artist's desk

Atanas Patsev


Borislav Stoev


Veselin Gospodinov


Violeta Radkova


Virginia Pencheva

Musical landscape, 2015

Varban Christov

Traveling musician

Gosho Georgiev

Unsung arias, 2014

Grisha Kubratov

Back to jazz

Grozdan Ilkov – Grafa


Daniela Maksimova

Composition with checkered drapery

Daniel Dyankov

Playing body

Dimitar Kirov

Music 8

Zlatka Stoykova

Balkanton, 2017

Ivan Murkvichka

Portrait of the pianist Prokopova

Ivan Shurman


Irena Parashkevova

Streich Genetrix

Luben Gaidarov

Musician, 1979

Margarita Atanasova

Mariyana Marinova


Matey Mateev


Maya Kubratova


Milen Dzhanovski

Dupinski chan

Nikolay Buzov

Movement, 2018

Nikolay Karadzhov


Ognyan Balkandzhiev

Piano Bar, 2008

Penka Mincheva

CC, 2019

Snezhina Popgencheva


Susumo Endo

Space & Space 1407

Tanya Paseva

Pink streak, 2018