The first graphic exhibition of Sotnikov in the Russian Museum displays a cycle of 14 works about the ancient Greek hero Hercules (2012). Starting in the 1980s, Sotnikov worked in series, like most of the masters of contemporary art, from Claude Monet to Pablo Picasso, from Henri Matisse to Andy Warhol. However, the individuality of the characters, the uniqueness of the paintings have always been important to him. Therefore, serial images of the infant Hercules, suffocating a snake in a cradle, killing his music teacher Lin with a kifara blow, or “posing” in the skin of a defeated Kiferon lion, are each endowed with its own drawing of the composition.
The name of Ivan Sotnikov (1961, Leningrad - 2015, St. Petersburg), artist and priest, is associated with 35 years of St. Petersburg art. The first artistic world for Sotnikov was the Hermitage, where his mother worked, where he spent his adolescence in the "Young Friends of Art" circle. Sotnikov liked to say that his work is divided into pictures "from the head" and pictures "from life." Sotnikov's work combines museum culture and the free element of the new avant-garde art.