The Avant Garde movement in Russia


The avant garde movement in Russia was existence in 1949 to the year 1952, the term avant garde is a Russian term that means the front guards or the van guards, this term refers to the work that is usually meant for experimenting, this work include art and politics and also culture. The movement was meant to push the boundaries of norms and the status quo.

This paper discusses the avant garde movement and the work of some Russian artists who include Natalia Goncharova, Kazimir Malevich and Wassily Kandinsky who were Russians.

Kazimir Malevich:

Kazimir Malevich was born in the year 1878 until his death in 1935, he was popularly known for his painting and he was an avant garde painter in Russia, in 1904 his aim was to join the Moscow school of painting and sculpture and when this failed he studied the religious icons in Moscow, this is how he began icon painting, in the year 1906 he began studying painting at the Rerberg studio, whose purpose was to help him to join the Moscow college of painting. Kazimir Malevich was considered an important member of the avant garde movement in Russia.

The avant garde paintings were meant to be those that enlightened the viewers of these

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paintings, Malevich created ant German propaganda and he also wrote slogans on paintings that were drawn by other painters.

Natalia Goncharova:

Natalia Goncharova was born in the year 1881 and dies in the year 1962, she was an avant garde artist in Russia and she was the wife of a poet named Alexander Pushkin. She undertook

her art studies in the academy of art in Moscow; she organized the Donkey tail exhibition of 1912.

Wassily Kandinsky:

Wassily Kandinsky was born in 1866 and dies in the year 1944, he was a painter, an art theorist and a print maker, he was one famous painter in that he was credited for painting the first abstract work that is considered modern.

He joined the University of Moscow where he studied economics and law, he started painting art

the age of 30 and in 1896 he joined the Munich school of fine art, he is considered an avant garde painting member.

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Role of Russian Orthodox Icons on the Avant-Garde movement in Russia:

The role of Wassily Kandinsky:

Wassily Kandinsky painting did not emphasis any human figure, his paintings included a painting known as old Russia, this painting had the view of peasants and the nobles before the wall of a town, this painting was highly colorful and fanciful, the other painting was the riding couple painting of the year 1907, this painting depicted a man and a woman riding a horse, the man held the woman with tenderness, his use of color on this painting showed the use of color to express the artist experience on nature.

The other painting was the blue rider of the year 1903. This painting was named the blue rider because it depicted a blue figure riding a speeding horse through a rocky meadow, this technique used by him on this painting led to the use of a similar technique that was used by painters in the following years.

The year 1906 to 1908 Kandinsky spent of time traveling in Europe, he was associated with the associate of the Blue Rose art group which was a symbolic group of Moscow, he painted The Blue Mountain was painted at the time which showed his trend toward pure abstraction painting, the painting was a blue mountain which was flanked by two big trees, one was yellow, and the other one was red. There were three riders and others crosses at the bottom of the painting. The faces of the riders, clothing and their saddles were a single color, and non of the figures displayed real detail. The use of the colors in this painting illustrated Kandinsky progress in art in which the color was independent of forms of nature.

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The period1906 to 1908 paintings were composed of large and expressive colored masses which evaluated independence of color from forms of nature, this therefore made painters not to no longer to limit themselves and this made them to superimpose and overlap in a free way to create paintings that had extraordinary forces.

Music also influenced the emergence of abstract art as music is an abstract by nature. This is because music does not represent the exterior but to expresses the inner feelings of the soul. Kandinsky in most occasions used music to create his works. This is the reason why he referred to some of his paintings as improvisations, while to others he referred to them as composition. The World War one break in 1914 ended Kandinsky plans and he went back to Russia and in the year 1918 he dealt with cultural development of Russia

, he joined the domains of art pedagogy and in museum. He taught in a program that was based on the form and color of painting.

Kandinsky taught in the Bauhaus which was architecture and art school that was founded Walter, It dealt with plastic arts, his teachings were based on the theory and practical application of plastic arts. This led to the development of Kandinsky works on forms. this was particularly on different line forms which led to the publication of his book in 1926 entitled Point and Line to Plane.

In 1925 he produced his yellow red and blue painting, this work showed Kandinsky constructivism and suprematism in painting, this included the freedom of the treatment of planes that were rich in colors and magnificent gradation, the yellow red and blue painting comprised of a number of forms which was a yellow rectangle, a red cross and a dark blue circle, there were a also straight lines dark lines lines, arcs, circles and colored checkerboards which contributed to the paintings complexity.

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In the year 1939 he painted his last form, this was the Composition IX which was highly contrasted with powerful diagonals and the central form gave an impression of the human embryo in a womb. There were squares of colors which were small and these colored bands seemed to stand outwards against the black background. Kandinsky works was therefore was characterized by certain touches that were discrete and veiled

Kandinsky work on painting that analysis the use of form and color in painting shows his the inner experience of painting which has lead to the development of an sensorial rich work, his paintings are subjective forms of experience, he therefore contributed to the avant garde movement in that he used form and color to bring out the feelings he wanted to express to the viewers of his painting, he introduced the use of abstract painting and created the independence of paintings to the forms of nature, this is evident from the use of colors that do not resemble any living form in the world.

The roles of Natalia Goncharova

Natalia Goncharova was a prominent avant garde artist, a painter and a costume designer she was inspired by the primitive folk art of Russia, she used her work to emulate this by the use of elements such as fauvism and cubism. With her husband Mikhail she developed Rayonism, They were also the main initiators of the pre-Revolution avant garde organization, and this was through their organization of the Donkey Tail art exhibition of the year 1912.

The organization of the Donkey Tail art exhibition was seen as a break from European influence on art and this led to the establishment of an independent school of modern art in Russia. The influence of Russian Futurism is also evidence in Goncharova paintings. Initially she was preoccupied with painting icons and the primitive Russian painting, later she became famous work such as The Cyclist and Rayonnist works.

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As the leader of the Moscow Futurists, they organized lecture evenings as the Italian counterparts did. Goncharova was also involved with graphic design. She was a member of the avant-garde group from when it was founded in the year 1911.

Natalia Goncharova played a role in the avant garde movement in Russia in that she was influenced to paint by the fact that the folk art of Russia to her seemed to primitive, she therefore together with her husband worked on new paintings such as the cyclist and her efforts to organize the donkey tail art exhibition led to the strengthening of this movement.

Kazimir Malevich: