In the midst of the turbulent social and political conditions of the early 20th century, progressive artists in Russia explored aesthetic and formal directions that challenged traditional art and supported the new social order begun in 1917. Avant-garde artists worked in Russia within a singular political context, and they also shared important contacts and affinities with contemporaneous artists in the West. Artists plumbed technology as source and subject matter for art, explored new techniques and formal vocabularies, and investigated utilitarian and agit-prop applications of modern design. Contributors to this volume examine these developments in art, architecture, and design in relation to literature, philosophy and politics. They explore in depth some of the complex associations between the avant-garde in Russia and in the West for an international perspective on the study of modern art during this period.
Part 1 Contacts: The Impact of the Ballets Russes on Design in the West, 1909-1914, Charles S. Mayer; Tatlin's Tower - Revolutionary Symbol and Aesthetic, Gail Harrison Roman; Environments of Propaganda - Russian and Soviet Expositions and Pavilions in the West, Myroslava M. Mudrak and Virginia Hagelstein Marquardt; OSA's 1927 Exhibition of Contemporary Architecture - Russia and the West Meet in Moscow, K. Paul Zygas. Part 2 Affinities: Malevich and Mondrian - Non-Objective Form as the Expression of the ""Absolute"", Magdalena Dabrowski; Photomontage and Its Audience - El Lissitzky and Berlin Dada, K. Michael Hays; The VKhUTEMAS and the Bauhaus, Christina Lodder; Louis Lozowick - An American's Assimilation of Russian Avant-Garde Art of the 1920s, Virginia Hagelstein Marquardt.