The Artist as Producer
Russian Constructivism in Revolution
By (author) Maria Gough
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Artist as Producer by Maria Gough
Book DescriptionThe Artist as Producer reshapes our understanding of the fundamental contribution of the Russian avant-garde to the development of modernism. Focusing on the single most important hotbed of Constructivist activity in the early 1920s - the Institute of Artistic Culture (INKhUK) in Moscow - Maria Gough offers a powerful reinterpretation of the work of the first group of artists to call themselves Constructivists. Her lively narrative ranges from famous figures such as Aleksandr Rodchenko to others who are much less well known, such as Karl Ioganson, a key member of the state-funded INKhUK whose work paved the way for an eventual dematerialization of the integral art object. Through the mining of untapped archives and collections in Russia and Latvia and a close reading of key Constructivist works, Gough highlights fundamental differences among the Moscow group in their handling of the experimental new sculptural form - the spatial construction - and of their subsequent shift to industrial production. The Artist as Producer upends the standard view that the Moscow group's formalism and abstraction were incompatible with the sociopolitical imperatives of the new Communist state. It challenges the common equation of Constructivism with functionalism and utilitarianism by delineating a contrary tendency toward non-determinism and an alternate orientation to process rather than product. Finally, the book counters the popular perception that Constructivism failed in its ambition to enter production by presenting the first-ever case study of how a Constructivist could, and in fact did, operate within an industrial environment. The Artist as Producer offers provocative new perspectives on three critical issues - formalism, functionalism, and failure - that are of central importance to our understanding not only of the Soviet phenomenon but also of the European vanguards more generally.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780520226180
(254mm x 178mm x 19mm)
Imprint: University of California Press
Publisher: University of California Press
Publish Date: 15-Apr-2005
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Maria Gough
Leger, Paperback (January 2014)
An insightful look at the dynamic relationship between modern art and modern urban life in 1920s Paris through the lens of Fernand Leger's masterpiece The City
Avant-Garde Art in Everyday Life, Hardback (August 2011)» View all books by Maria Gough
Beginning around 1910, vanguard artists demanded that true art go beyond the intellectual and transform daily life. This title highlights the work of six influential European artists who took this idea into the wider world, where it merged enthusiastically with demands in the industrial marketplace, nascent mass media, and urban popular culture.
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Author Biography - Maria Gough
Maria Gough is Associate Professor of Art History at Stanford University
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