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XXth century’s Russian Artists

Bakulina Lyudmila (1905-1980)

Embankment with palm-trees. 1934.

Water colour, gouache, ink, varnish.30x38,8

After completing her secondary education, she attempted to enter Moscow University, but failed the entrance examinations (1922). Replying to a job advertisement, Bakulina was hired as model at VKHUTEMAS (Higher Art Technical Studios); she also worked at the sculptor I.Efimov’s studio and attended F.Rerberg’s tutoring. In 1930, together with her husband, artist V.Pochitalov, a student of A.Shevchenko, she went on a trip to the Caucasus where she produced many sketches and rough drafts. She worked as an artist at the Glav APU (Principal Army Political Administration) from 1930 to 1935. Most of her creative output dates from this period, after which she gave up painting despite her undoubted talent as an artist. In 1932 an exhibition “The Artists of Soviet Russia during recent 15 years” was held in Leningrad and the next year in Moscow. Bakulina exhibited there only one of her works - water-colour.

Walk in the Gorky Park in Moscow

Oil on canvas. 105x105,5

Barto Rostislav (1902-1974)


White paint on cardboard. 48x58

Studied at the VKHUTEIN- VKHUTEMAS (Higher Art Technical Institute), graduated from the graphics faculty where his teachers were I.Nivinsky, P.Pavlinov, V.Favorskiy.He was among many students of the artist Alexander Shevchenko. From 1924, R.Barto participated in exhibitions “Painters’ Workshop”, “Existence”. His works of the 1930s were distinguished by their bright expressiveness and one could feel the passion of the artist for a music by Scryabin and Rahmaninov. During these years Barto exhibited his works in Amsterdam, Stockholm, Paris, Philadelphia, Chicago, New York and even in Tokyo (1933). In the 1940s the artist began to produce the graphic works. While alive he was not popular, although his colleages recognized him as a master of high rate.

Fisherwoman. 1930

Oil on cardboard. 48x585

Bogdanov Sergei (1888-1967)

Sewers. 1925

Oil on canvas. 128x112,2

Having graduated from the Tambov seminary (1911) he moved to Moscow, where he attended K.Yuon’s studio. In 1914 Bogdanov entered the school of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture where his teacher was K.Korovin (1914-1917). Then he studied at the Second Free State Studios under P.Konchalovskiy, later in 1919-1922 worked at the Orenburg Free State Studios and taught there painting. In Moscow he lived since 1922. In 1925 Bogdanov joined the group of artists “Existence” and participated in the group’s exhibition.

Self-portrait in Oriental robe. 1920s

Oil on canvas.120,3?99

Borovaya Nadezhda (1909-1987)

Our children walking

Wrapping paper, pencil drawing, chalk.21x28

Graduated from secondary school in Velizh in the Smolensk province, then entered the Vocational School of Art and Industry in Leningrad (1925-1929). There she was trained in monumental painting in Kuznetsov’s studio. After her marriage to Admiral Nikolayev, she moved to Moscow. Studied at the Institute of Advanced Training of Artists (1934-1938) and L.Kramarenko’s studio. In 1938 Admiral Nikolayev was executed for parricide and Borovaya (surname of her second husband, her maiden name was Terentyeva) was arrested and sent to the Temnikov camp where she spent seven years. During imprisonment, she was visited by her friend Vera Milyutina who secretly spirited out her pictures describing life in the camp. Parts of the camp series are in the museum collection.

Burlyuk David (1882-1967)

Pink landscape. 1912

Oil on canvas. 75x80

Studied at the Kazan Art School (1898-1899; 1901), the Odessa Art School (1899-1900;1909), then at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture (1910-1914), the Royal Academy in Munich (1902-1903) and the F.Kormon studio where his teacher was V.Dits (Paris, 1904). From 1906 participated in exhibitions. He was a founder - member of the association “Jack of Diamonds” (1910-1916), and member of associations “World of Art” (1915) and “Moscow Artists Partnership” (1912-1918) as well as “Thirteen” (1931). He was among the first Russian futurists.

Chekrygin Vasiliy (1897-1922)

Four walking women. 1922

Paper, pressed charcoal.29,4x24,1

At the age of nine, he was admitted as an apprentice to the icon-painting studios of Kiev-Pechera Lavra. At thirteen, he entered K.Korovin’s studio at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture. In 1918, he helped to design decorations for the Red Square at the celebration of the October Revolution. He worked as a teacher at VKHUTEMAS (Higher Art Technical Studios). In 1922, he helped to found “Makovets” group which united artists seeking to revive the essence of art. N.Fyodorov’s philosophical concept about the resurrection of humanity and resettlement to the cosmos had a great influence on Chekrygin’s creative activity.

Composition “Pushkino”. 1922

Paper, pressed charcoal. 30,9x27,4

Echeistov Georgiy (1897-1946)

Portrait of Aksyonov. 1920.

Oil on canvas. 51x34

Till 1918 he studied at the Moscow Stroganov Art and Industry School, department of wood-carving, then transferred to the First Free Art Studios. There he studied without teacher’s guidance and at the B.Grigoryev’s studio he was trained in drawing. He supported the “Leftist” trends in art and literature, and regarded himself to be a futurist. That’s why he produced non-objectivist compositions and wrote verses. His study at the graphic faculty under V.Favorskiy had a profound influence on him. During the subsequent years the artist actively worked in the sphere of book designing: he produced stamps, ex-libris, invitation cards, booklets for exhibitions, etc.

Funny Geometry. 1924-1925

Ink on paper, gouache. 31,2x24,2

Ermilova- Platova Efrosinya (1895-1974)

Bleaching cloth. 1929-1930

Oil on canvas. 54x33,2

She began to paint at the age of 11 when she was a second form pupil in the Kherson gymnasia. The young artist was greatly impressed by the exhibition of Goncharova, Larionov and the Burlyuk brothers in Kherson. In 1914 she entered the Higher Women Classes, the faculty of history and philology; at the same time attended K.Yuon’s art school. But hard exessive work led to worsening of her health. She had to leave classes and to attend only K.Yuon’s school, where she achieved great success in drawing. She also took private lessons from I.Mashkov (1917-1919). In 1919 she returned home and worked in Nikopol, where she established a museum, a studio and a poster workshop. Then she moved to Simferopol and worked there at the art department of the Crimea popular education office under the guidance of Tugenholdt. A singer Kastalskiy opened an opera studio in Yalta and invited Ermilova- Platova to work as a decorator. In 1921 she returned to Moscow and worked at the theatre with A.Exter. In 1923 she decorated several pavilions of the Agricultural Exhibition. Participated in many exhibitions. Worked in different genres and techniques. The artist mentioned in her biography that she always “liked primitivists Giotto, Breygel…and modern French artists”. But art critics for many years did not pay proper attention to Ermilova- Platova’s artistic work despite her experimental searches and her acute perception of reality.

Falk Robert (1886-1958)

Still-life with a can

Oil on canvas.80,5x88

Studied at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture under V.Serov and K.Korovin. In 1910, he became a member of “Jack of Diamonds” group. Like many other artists in the group, he experimented by combining the style of Cezanne with traditions of Russian cheap popular print (lubok) and billboards. The period 1928-1937 spent in Paris influenced the artist’s creative work. His paintings became dense and complex. During the war Falk was evacuated to Bashkiriya with Jewish Theatre, from there he moved to Samarkand, where he taught in the School of Fine Arts. The painting “Suzani Background” was done by the artist in Samarkand in 1943. Savitskiy at that time, graduate of the Moscow Institute of Art, was painting the same model. The young model preferred the portrait by Falk as she thought it made her beautiful. For almost 20 years Falk lived in isolation; at a solo exhibition in 1939, no one bought the works of the “artist-bourgeois”. At Falks funeral it was said that “the day will come when the museums will compete for Falk’s paintings”. In 1962, at a famous exhibition at the Manege (devoted to the 30 years anniversary of the MOSKH) Falk and his works were the subject of caustic remarks by the Soviet Communist Party leader Khrushchev. To many this was excellent promotion for the artist.

Suzani Background. 1943.

Oil on canvas.99,7x74

Fateev Pyotr (1891-1971)

Composition. 1917.

Paper, sepia. 41,8x33,2; 40,9x32,1

Graduated from the Komissarov Vocational School in 1910. From 1915, he studied at the Art Studio under F.Rerberg. Nietzsche’s book “Thus spoke Zarathustra”, theosophy and the idea of human potential were inspiration behind the spiritual content in Fateev’s works. Fateev believed it was possible for man to get space. With evolution man would be able to exist in outer space. The artist -fantast Fateev in 1927, headed a group of the artists-cosmists (B. Smirnov-Rusetskiy, S.Shigolev, A.Sardan, V. Pshesetskaya , V.Chernovolenko) “Amaravella”. After disbanding the group and arresting its participants P.Fateev led isolated way of life. Only in 1966 at the Moscow Power Engineering Institute the exhibition of Fateev’s works was held.

Sketch of Composition. 1917

Carton, tempera, aluminium paint. 41,2x18

Lev Galperin (1886-1938)

On his knees.

Tempera on paper, white paint. 28,5x19

Home educated. In 1908-1909 in Odessa, Galperin worked as a sculptor and moved to Paris a year later, where he specialized in art-sculpture and attended evening art school.He studied at the Academy de la Grande Chaumiere, in the sculpture studio headed by E.Bourdel, and in the Russian Academy, on his own. At the beginning of the First World War, the artist left for Turkey, visited Greece and settled down in Egypt(Alexandria), where between 1914 and 1919, he gave private classes in modeling and practiced sculpture. He worked in Jaffa and Jerusalem for almost one year. Then he went to Vienna, where he earned his living by making wooden bas-reliefs for sale in New-York. In late 1921, he returned to Russia. Of the twelve years he spent in Moscow and Leningrad, Galperin spent less than five years on his speciality. He earned an income by working on random orders. On December 25,1934, he was arrested and sentenced to five years of imprisonment. He was indicted for the way he depicted the leaders. His paintings were regarded as counter-revolutionary in content. In his testimony, Galperin denied the presence of art in the Soviet Union and was sceptical about the established system. He served part of his sentence in Karlag, then was transferred to Dmitlag in the Moscow region. Galperin’s death certificate reads: “Cause of death: execution by shooting”.

Nikolay Grigoriev (1880-1943)

Coffee-house. 1920.

Oil on canvas. 81x71,5

Studied at the Kazan Art School under N.Feshin in 1903-1909 and in 1909-1914, at the Moscow School of Painting,Sculpture and Architecture under A. Arkhipov, K.Korovin and L.Pasternak. He was a member of the following associations: “Moscow Salon” in 1911-1914, “Trade Union of Artists -Painters in Moscow” in 1918, “World of Art” in 1921, “Makovets” in 1922, OMKH (Society of Moscow Artists) in 1927- 1932. Worked as a teacher at the Preliminary Training Department of VKHUTEMAS (Higher Art Technical Studios) and VKHUTEIN (Higher Art Technical Institute), at the Architecture and Construction Institute, and the Department of Fabric Styling of Moscow Textile Institute.

Still-life with a lamp. 1921.

Oil on canvas. 71x53

Istomin Konstantin (1887-1942)

Spinners. 1923-1924

Oil on canvas. 97x106

Studied at the Shreider’s studio in Kharkov (1904-1906), the School of Sh.Kholloshi in Munich (1906-1908), the Moscow University (1909-1913). From 1910 participated in exhibitions. Member of associations “Makovets” (1922-1923), “Four Arts” (1925-1929), AKHR (Association of Artists of Russia). In 1923-1930 worked as a teacher at the VKHUTEMAS- VKHUTEIN (Higher Art Technical Studios, Higher Art Technical Institute), in 1930-1939 at the Moscow Polygraphic Institute, in 1937-1942 - at the Moscow Art Institute named after V.I.Surikov. Istomin combined his pedagogical activity with creative work, painted genre scenes, portraits and landscapes.

Moscow landscape. 1922

Oil on canvas. 64,8õ47,8

Isupov Aleksey (1889-1957)

Oriental café. 1914-1921.

Ply-wood, tempera, gilt. 79,5x64,5

He was a son of a woodcarver. Studied in the Moscow School of Painting,Sculpture and Architecture (1908-1913), under A.Vasnetsov, A.Arkhipov, K.Korovin, V.Serov. Lived in Moscow till 1915 and again in 1922-1925, and in Central Asia in 1915-1921, where he did his military service (1915-1917); later he moved to Italy (1926 onwards). Participated in exhibitions as of 1908. While in Central Asia, he painted numerous views of Tashkent and Samarkand and copied the ornamental designs of unique architectural monuments in Bukhara, Samarkand and Tashkent. He also set up and illustrated the journal “Young Inhabitant of Turkestan”, and worked as a teacher at the Turkestan Regional Public Art School in Tashkent (1918-1921). His students, among others, included N.Karakhan, M.Kupriyanov, S.Chuykov. In 1926, he went for medical treatment to Italy. During the Second World War, he was an active participant of the resistance movement in Rome.

Joltkevich Alexander (1872-1943)

Fatigue. 1914

Bronze. 59x32x32

He received artistic education between 1907-1917. In 1907 migrated to Paris where he attended A.Bourdel’s studio. From 1911 Joltkevich regularly presented his works at Salons. 1917 Joltkevich left all his works in his Paris studio and returned to Russia, but there he was involved mainly in activity of Commission for Control of Exportation of artistic values abroad (he was a head of Commission) and could hardly find time for creative work. Part of his works left in Paris were delivered in Moscow by sculptor O. Meschaninov in 1925.

My muse.1918.


Komarovskiy Vladimir (1889-1937)

Portrait of a Man

Oil on plywood.89,5x71,3

Once Florenskiy recommended his works to present at exhibition of association “Makovets”: “He relies on French artists and Russian icons (…). This is a great artist, each month advancing a step ahead. He seeks for concrete expression in painting, striving to express the core of reality”. Florenskiy and Komarovskiy met at Sergiev Posad, where the artist came with his family in 1923 and lived there for several years. By that time he was already a well-known icon-painter. He studied at the Academy of Art and in studios in Paris. In 1910, the restored and once again glowing icons of the Russian Museum made such a strong impression on him that he decided to take up icon painting.He created his first iconostasis for the church in the estate of Count Medem in the Saratov province in partnership with D.Stelletskiy, a more experienced artist. Komarovskiy was arrested several times, his first arrest in April 1925 led to his exile to the Urals. The last arrest in 1937 was linked with the so-called case of “Counter- Revolutionary Illegal Monarchic Union of Church - Goers- Followers of the Genuine Orthodox Church”. Komarovskiy did not plead guilty. He said: “I an an Orthodox believer who recognizes the Old Church of the Nikon trend.. I believe in the verity of the Christian religion, i.e. the one which the Soviet government does not want to recognize and which it ideologically struggles against”. Komarovskiy was executed on the Butov firing ground on 5 November, 1937.

Family Portrait.Early 1930s.

Oil on Carton. 75,5x54,5

Kozlov Alexander (1902-1946)

Circus Entertainer in a Top Hat. 1920

Oil on plywood. 55x45

In 1918, he entered the Moscow State Free Art Studios. His favourite great masters were Rembrandt, El-Greco, Delacroix, Cezanne and P.Kuznetsov. He participated in exhibitions from 1930 onwards. Kozlov’s paintings are plastic, emotional and expressive. “Circus Entertainer in a Top Hat” and “Portrait of a Woman in a Hat” belong to the earlier period of his artistic endeavour. In 1946, Kozlov died in an accident.

Portrait of a Woman in a Hat. 1920

Oil on plywood. 54,5x44,5

Kudryashov Ivan (1896-1972)

Composition “Bird”. 1932

Oil on carton.62,2x62,2

Studied in the Stroganov School (1912), Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture (1913-1918), P.Kuznetsov’s studio, State Free Art Studios (1918-1919) and took classes from Malevich. Designed advertisement billboards and emblems for celebrations devoted to the October Revolution. Worked as a teacher in Orenburg (1919-1920). Returned to Moscow (1921). Participated in exhibitions of “OST” (Society of Easel Painters), “Moscow Association of Artists”. Worked at the Advanced Training Institute (1937_1939). His obsession with cosmos was explained not only by his interest in the idea of exploring space, but by the new artistic tools the subject required. Many of the graphic sketches made in the 1920s were repeated in colour in the 1960s.

Composition. From “Space” series.1922

Paper, water-colour. 32,2x25,2

Kuprin Alexander (1880-1960)

Still-life with a pink tea-pot

Oil on canvas. 89,5x104

Graduated from Borisoglebsk Gymnasia. Studied in St.Petersburg in a private school of L.Dmitriyev- Kavkazskiy (1902-1904) and then drawing and painting school of K.Yuon and I.Dudin (1904-1906), at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture. In 1910 together with P.Konchalovskiy and I.Mashkov and V.Rozhdestvenskiy he established the “Jack of Diamonds” association. The artists shared a common interest in the French school of painting (Cezanne) but did not reject the national traditions of Russian folk art. The artists’ work included still-lives which provided many opportunities to explore the interactions between form, space and colour. For Kuprin, still-life was a constructive logic in the recognition of the environment, ornamentality and eloquence of painting.

Le Dantu Michail (1891-1917)

Futuristic composition.

Paper, water-colour, pencil drawing. 25,5x22

In 1908, Le Dantu graduated from the St. Petersburg Real School. He attended art studios, first of Tsionglinskiy, then M.Bernstein. In 1909, he entered the St. Petersburg Academy of Art and established close relations with the group of artists that founded the “Union of the Youth” who were actively exploring new ways in art. In 1912, he gave up his studies at the Academy and left for Moscow. He met M.Larionov and N.Goncharova and participated in the preparation for the famous “Donkey’s Tail” exhibition. In the spring of 1912 he went to Tiflis with the artist K.Zdanevich. There he observed closely the astonishing paintings of the unknown self-made artist Niko Pirosmanishvili. Once back in St. Petersburg, Le Dantu actively participated in exhibitions and made in-depth studies of ancient and primitive art, wrote theoretical works, delivered lectures and argued at disputes. The need for regular income led him to enter the Nikolayev Cavalry School. However, he found studies difficult and eventually abandoned the school. In 1915, Le Dantu was called up for military service. He was killed on the front in 1917.

Two figures

Gouache and ink on carton. 42,2x15,4

Luppov Sergey (1883-1977)

Rendez-vous. 1920

Oil on carton. 73,5x87,5

After graduating from the Slobodsk Real School in 1912, he entered the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture where his teachers were N.Kasatkin, A.Vasnetsov, A.Arkhipov and K.Korovin and graduated from it in 1917 as a first category artist. S.Luppov combined his creative work with teaching. In 1918-1923, he worked in Slobodsk city as a teacher of graphic arts, establishing an art studio and a museum. In 1923 he moved to Moscow and worked as a teacher of graphic arts at the Military Academy. From then on, Luppov was a participant of all exhibitions of AKHRR (Association of Artists of Revolutionary Russia) and later of all exhibitions organized by the Union of Artists he joined in 1932.

Sitting Woman in a black swimsuit.

Water colour on carton. 15,4x26,4

Mazel Ruvim (1890-1967)

Migration. 1930s.

Oil on canvas. 80x124

Mazel obtained his degree in arts in the School of Arts of Ieguda Pen in Vitebsk which Chagal also attended. To continue his education, in 1907 Mazel entered the Art Promotion School in St.Petersburg headed by N.Rerikh. In 1910-1914, he studied in the Academy of Arts and private studios of Munich. With some friends he travelled across Italy. When the war broke out in 1914, he returned to Russia and in 1915 was conscripted into the army. His military unit was sent to Turkmenia, Krasnovodsk and Ashgabad and he would spend his leave time sketching and studying Turkmenia, and its customs and traditions. At that time, he created a number of water-colour albums: “Patterns of a Persian city”, “Valley Tales”, “Carpet Tales”. With the artists N.Vladychuk and M.Libakov, he established an art studio in Ashgabad in 1922, named “Avant-Garde Art School of the Orient” out of which grew the Turkmen Fine Arts. In 1923, due to aggravated health Mazel had to leave his beloved Turkmenia and return to Moscow. In Moscow the artist worked in the publishing houses “Moscow”, “Red Novelty”, “Rainbow”, etc., designed the books of R.Kipling and I.Erenburg. In 1934, Mazel entered the Moscow Central Museum of Ethnography. In 1937 and 1940 Mazel participated in the museum expeditions to Turkmenia and Karakalpakia. The Nukus museum comprises a great many works by Mazel from sketches to completed works of art which demonstrate the principle of monography used by Savitskiy in creating the collection

Women going to the bath-house

Paper, gouache, water-colour. 8,9x30,6

Milashevskiy Vladimir (1883-1976)

Man with a water lily.1931

Oil on canvas. 84x51

Draftsman, watercolourist, painter. Painted landscapes, portraits, domestic interiors and everyday life scenes. Illustrator. Produced also posters, sketches for theatre. He was born in Tiflis. Studied at the Saratov Real School where his teacher of drawing was the artist V.Konovalov, who also worked at the Bogolyubov Drawing School and its evening classes were attended by the future artist (1906-1907). He studied drawing and painting in the studios of A.Grot and E.Steinberg (1911-1913) in Kharkov. He also was educated at the Higher Art School of the Academy of Art in St.Petersburg at the architectural department. His teachers were N.Bruni, I.Tvorozhnikov, G.Zaleman, A.Makovskiy. Worked at the “New Art Studio” (1913-1915) under the guidance of M.Dobuzhinskiy, E.Lancere, A.Yakovlev. For the first time exhibited his works at the Exhibition of works by the artists - members of the House of Art (1921) in Petrograd. From 1924 onward lived in Moscow. One of the founders of the “13” group. Participant of numerous exhibitions in the USSR and abroad.

Millioti Vasiliy (1875-1943)

Portrait of a woman against an ornamented background. 1933

Oil on canvas 65x50

Graduated from the law faculty of the Moscow University (1904). He had no any artistical education, but while at gymnasia he took classes from drawing teacher Turchaninov. His brother Nikolay Millioti’s fellow-students of the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture P.Kuznetsov, N.Sapunov, P.Utkin and S.Sudeykin persuaded Vasiliy to continue his studies in painting and drawing himself. From 1905 onward Millioti began to participate in exhibitions. Member and exponent of the “Blue Rose” association (1907). Ornamental expressiveness, fantasy and exquisite refinement caused by their passion for Orient which was a characteristic feature of the “Blue Rose” paintings, can be found in many works of the artist.

Morgunov Aleksey (1884-1935)

Kuzminki. 1911

Oil on canvas. 91x105,5

Studied at the Moscow Stroganov School of Art and Industry, attended literary and art hobby groups. In 1909-1910 Morgunov left for Germany and France, then again for France and Italy. The impressionists, Puvis de Chavannes, Manet, Courbet and Cezanne had a huge influence on the artist. In 1910, the Russian “Cezannists” M.Larionov, N.Goncharova, I.Mashkov, A.Lentulov, P.Konchalovskiy, R.Falk and A.Kuprin established the “Jack of Diamonds” group of which Morgunov was also a member. In 1911, he joined the “Bytiye” (Existence) group. In 1912, through M.Larionov and N.Goncharova, he joined the “Donkey’s tail” group and shortly afterwards became a member of the “Association of Moscow Artists” (OMKH).

Nikritin Solomon (1898-1965)

The old and the new. 1935

Oil on canvas. 178,5x216

Painter, graphic and stage artist. Worked as a decorator of large scale celebrations. Monumentalist and designer. Painted portraits, genre and narrative scenes, non-objectivist and space compositions. Illustrated books and journals. Many experimental explorations in the sphere of art . Graduated from the Kiev School of Art (1909-1914). Taught by L.Pasternak in Petrograd and A.Yakovlev in Moscow (1915-1917). He studied in the A.Exter art studio in Kiev (1918-1920). In 1919 Nikritin was one of the founders of the Jewish Cultural League. In 1920-1922, he studied in VKHUTEMAS- (Higher Art Technical Studios).He was one of the founders of the “Projection Theatre”, which in 1923 staged “The Tragedy of A.O.Y” consisting of plastic movements and speech sounds. Co-founded with K.Redko, M.Plaksin, A.Tyshler and S.Luchishkin the group of “Projectionists” (“Electroorganism”), whose exhibition was held in 1922 in the Moscow Museum of Artistic Culture. In 1924, Nikritin participated in “The First Discussion Exhibition of the Active Revolutionary Art Associations” with the group of “Projectionists” where he exhibited a series of sketches, photos and volume constructions. In 1935, he created the composition “The Old and the New” where he conforms to the ideology, comparing images of Soviet people symbolizing the New with images of the past representing the Old.

Composition “Solitude”. 1927

White paint on carton. 20,7x17,8

Osmerkin Alexander (1890-1967)

Girl with a doll.1913

Oil on canvas 75x75

Studied at the Kiev Art School under G. Dedchenko and I.. Makushenko (1909-1911), in the studio of I.Mashkov in Moscow (1912-1913). From 1913 onward participated in exhibitions. Member of aassociations “Jack of Diamonds”, “World of Art”, AKHRR (Association of Artists of Revolutionary Russia), OMKH(Society of Moscow Painters) (1928), “Moscow Painters” (1925), “Bytiye” (Existence) (1926), “Wing” (1927). In the search of his own expressive means in painting the artist passed a way from impressionism and cubism to attempts of creating works conforming the spirit of the time, but these attempts failed. In 1948 Osmerkin was expulsed from the staff of the Moscow Art Institute named after Surikov and from the Leningrad Academy of Art accused in formalism and cosmopolitism.

Model with a mirror. 1924

Oil on canvas. 100x85

Pestel Vera (1887-1952)

Futuristic composition. 1916

Paper, gouache, ink, pen, pencil drawing, water-colour. 35x25,8

Pestel graduated from gymnasia with a gold metal, then attended a private art studio. She married at the age of 18, but this did not prevent her from studying at the Stroganov Art School. She attended an independent studio located in artist V.Rozhdestvenskiy’s apartment often visited by artists such as M.Larionov, P.Kuznetsov, A.Shevchenko, N.Udaltsova, A.Morgunov and V.Favorskiy. She spent the winter of 1912-1913 in Paris with artists N. Udaltsova and S. Karetnikova. The Paris art studios, museums, exhibitions and galleries provided a splendid opportunity to study European art. In 1915, influenced by the artist Tatlin, Pestel became interested in futurism. Later she gave up futurism and turned to realistic forms. She was a member of the “Makovets” and “Way of Painting” groups. V.Pestel experienced hard moral sufferings because in 1920 her husband died of typhoid and in 1940 her son was arrested and sent to labour camps where he had no right to write letters. Only after V.Pestel’s death in 1952 it became known from the document about posthumous rehabilitation of her son that he died in 1943.

Futuristic portrait. 1916

Paper, pencil drawing, charcoal.20,7õ17

Popova Lyubov (1889-1924)

Houses. 1914

Paper, water-colour, pencil drawing, ink.33,8x25,3

In 1907-1908, she attended S.Zhukovskiy’s studio and the School of Painting and Drawing of K.Yuon and I . Dudin. In 1910, she went to Italy where she was deeply impressed by Giotto’s paintings. In 1911, she visited Pskov and Vologda where she studied Old Russian art. In 1912-1913, together with V.Pestel and N.Udaltsova, she studied in the Academie la Palette in Paris. In 1913-1915, together with V.Bart and K.Zdanevich, she worked at V.Tatlin’s studio “Bashnya” (Tower). In 1914, she travelled across France and Italy and in 1915-1916, she became a member of the “Jack of Diamonds” association. In 1918, she was a member of college of the Fine Art Department of the People’s Comissariat for Education. Since 1918 became a professor of the Free Art Studios. From 1920-1921 - a member of the Institute of Artisitic Culture (INKHUK) and the professor of VKHUTEMAS (Higher Art Technical Studios).

Head . 1920.

Paper, pencil drawing.33,3õ24,4

Poret Alisa (1902-1984)

Family Portrait. 1937

Oil on canvas. 53x68

Graduated from the St.Petersburg Academy of Art. She took classes from Savinov, Kareev, Petrov-Vodkin, though considered P.Filonov her principal teacher. Filonov’s analytical art was closer to Poret’s nature. Technical skills and depth of imagination combine in Poret’s best works which were done under Filonov’s guidance. As a friend of Daniil Kharms, she became his co-author: they composed rhymes and riddles for children. Poret was also engaged in graphics, illustrating children’s books. Her portraits reveal another side of the artist, the ability to capture both the likeness and the character of a model.

Dark-haired and dark-eyed girl. 1937

Oil on canvas. 56,5x44,5

Pshesetskaya Vera (Runa) (1879-1945/46)

Portrait of Sardan.(Tar.) 1928

Oil on canvas. 106x54,5

She was an active member of the “Amaravella” group. Only five portraits painted by Pshesetskaya were preserved - all the rest perished. B.Smirnov- Rusetskiy wrote about Runa “It seemed as if she was sent us (members of “Amaravella”) by some Supreme Will in order to unite and consolidate our group and to complete our searches with more deep sense”. In St.Petersburg she was a member of the hobby club on theosophy and knew all the books concerning theosophy very well. In their theosophic club they conducted spiritualistic séance, devoted to exploring the nature of Venus. Her husband was Pyotr Uspenskiy. It was her husband who enriched her knowledge in occultism. In 1930 Pshesetskaya was arrested and sent into exile in Arkhangelsk. According to Smirnov-Rusetskiy, she died in 1945 or 1946.

Redko Kliment (1897-1956)

Winner.Boxing. 1929

Oil on canvas. 147x97, 5

The icon studio of the Kiev Pechera Lavra was the first step in Redko’s long exploration of art. He failed the entrance exams to the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture, so in 1914 entered the Petrograd School of the Artist Promotion Association. He saw the revolution of 1917 as a symbol of freedom, a chance for artists to experiment freely, and Redko set about inventing his own technique. He was one of many artists who helped decorate the Revolution celebrations. In 1927, Redko was sent to Paris to improve his artistic skills. There he worked as an artist in the exhibition department of the USSR Trade Delegates in Paris, also maintaining contacts with newspaper Le Monde. His works were exhibited at the Palais -Royal and galleries such as Grandjean, Castelle, Vignon. He became friend of Picasso. The Paris years matured Redko as an artist. After the Second World War, Redko was excluded from the Union of Artists for bourgeois tendencies during the second period of repressions under Stalin. The only way to earn money became teaching in amateur art club of the students from Timiryazev Academy. The artist died in 1956 without any official recognition.

By the Sea. Marie-Louise. 1933.

Oil on canvas. 117x90

Rozhdestvenskiy Vasiliy (1884-1963)

Ubayda. 1926.

Oil on canvas. 113x93

Graduated in art from the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture in 1911. His teachers S.Korovin and K.Gorskiy described his painting technique as an impressionist. From 1907 onwards, he participated in the Leonardo da Vinci Society exhibitions, the “Moscow Association of Artists”, “Jack of Diamonds”, “World of Art”, “Association of Moscow Painters”, “AKHRR”. In 1912, the artist visited Italy. Rozhdestvenskiy travelled a great deal within the USSR, from the Crimea and Caucasus to Karelia from Central Asia to Altay. The artist recalls his trip to Samarkand: “…worked little: painted an Uzbek in a bright kaftan and made several sketches”.

House walls.

Oil on canvas. 119x103

Rubashkin Samuil (1906-1975)

Feast of Spring in the Park. 1974.

Oil on canvas. 89x122

Born in Vitebsk. After the revolution, his family moved to Moscow. In 1927, Rubashkin graduated from the Faculty of Photography of the Higher State Institute of Cinematography. He worked at various film studios and took up painting in 1959. With no special training, Rubashkin taught himself the secrets of Fine Arts. The pictorial and narrative aspect of his paintings, similar to the “primitivist” style, were the only way he could convey his specific impressions of life. The name of artist was included in the Universal Encyclopaedia of Naïve Art. His work “Feast of Spring in the Park” was dedicated to the famous exhibition of Soviet Avant-Garde art known as “Bulldozer”. In 1974 Avant-Garde artists or non-conformists, tried to organize their first exhibition on the waste ground at the metro-station Belyayevo in Moscow. But the exhibition was broken up by bulldozers on the pretext of “subbotnik”, communal cleaning day. The artist witnessed the event and produced his work “Small pictures from the Exhibition”. In the left bottom corner, the artist depicted himself with an umbrella. I.V.Savitsky bought the canvas but renamed it so as to purchase it without any difficulty.

By the portrait of Peter the Great. 1975

Oil on canvas. 74x59

Rybchenkov Boris (1899-1994)

Winter day in the outskirts. 1930

Oil on canvas. 75x96

Painter, graphic artist and poster designer. Studied at the Kiev School of Art under E.Kruger- Prakhova, N.Strunnikov, M.Kozik (1915-1918) and in VKHUTEMAS under L.Popova, A.Drevin, A.Shevchenko. (1921-1925) . Participant of exhibitions since 1918. Member of associations “Rost” (1928-1929) and “13” (1929-1932). In 1920, he worked in “Rost Windows of satire” on the Western Front and decorated propaganda train. He worked with amateur artists and established the Children’s Art Studio #1 of the Leningrad district of Moscow (1960-1980). Moscow remained one of the constant and favourite themes in Rybchenkov’s creative work. Rybchenkov’s Moscow is not a pompous grand city but one of small side-streets, backyards, old-houses and reminiscences about the past.

Beyond Butyrskaya outpost.

Oil on canvas. 75x75

Rybnikov Alexey (1887-1949)

Apocalypse. 1918

Oil on canvas. 105x105,5

Studied at the Moscow Commercial School(1897-1905) and Kharkov School of Drawing and Painting (1905-1909). Lived in Moscow from 1910. In the early 1910th , Rybnikov attended private classes by Larionov. Rybnikov’s skill in creating in his works a World from Objects without simply imitating reality, and using the dynamics of forms is due partly to the influence of Larionov. The painting “Apocalypse” (1918) is drawn from the Bible, an appropriate theme for the time. As a skilled restorer - practitioner, Rybnikov was for many years head of the Restoration Department of the State Tretyakov Gallery.(1919-1949). Under his guidance, a number of Tretyakovka masterpieces (“Boyarynya Morozova”, “Ivan the Terrible”, “Battle under Grunwald” ) were restored. He was an author of series of researches, articles and books on the texture of classical paintings.He also headed the academic commission for compiling the “Instruction for keeping the museum values” and had been a general editor of this document.

Sandomirskaya Beatrisa (1894-1971)

Fisher-woman. 1937

Wood-carving. 155x60x60

Studied at the studio of Shervud and Malashkin, St.Petersburg Academy of Arts, attended P.Bakh’s studio and the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture under S.Volnukhin. In the early 1920s she did not stand aside the constructivist experiments. She liked an atmosphere of searches, the cubists striving to an active plasticity. It was that period when she felt a passion for such kind of art and it had a great importance in her artistic career. She travelled much all over the country during her trips, later headed the State Art Studios in Orenburg, Samarkand, Bukhara, worked as a teacher of drawing in various secondary schools, decorated large halls for celebrations and designed public demonstrations.

Sardan Alexander (Baranov) (1901-1974)

Microdynamics in Space.

Gouache on paper.24x34,1; 22,3x32,8

Alexander Sardan (Baranov) was born in Moscow. Having a perfect ear for music, he studied music under the guidance of famous teachers R.Glier and M.Gnesin. His first pencil drawings were made in 1920-1923, when the future artist decided to convey musical sounds in paints: “The music of sounds is virtually dynamical in time, and the music in paints catches and conveys this dynamics in space”. Sardan interested not only in the matters of culture, but also such sciences as physics, astronomy, geology and psychology. The artist’s real passion was the theme of Outer Space. In 1927, six like-minded artists established a group in Moscow, led by P.Fateev. “Amaravella” was the name for the group, invented by Sardan. To the artists, cosmos represented among other things an expanded consciousness. They were interested not only in technical space development by mankind but also the spiritual and aesthetic aspects of human beings in space. The group of artists -cosmists existed only for a short time. It was banned and almost all the artists, except Fateev, were arrested and sentenced to various terms of imprisonment. For a long time Sardan was better known as a producer of popular scientific films, because after a short imprisonment he gave up painting.


Paper on carton, tempera, pastel.23,5x31,8

Savitskiy Igor (1915-1984)

Street in old Khiva

Oil on carton.57x64

Igor Vitalyevich Savitskiy collector, founder of the Museum of Art, a person with incredibly wide range of interests was also a leading artist of Karakalpakstan. In 1946 he graduated from the Surikov Art Institute in Moscow. In 1950 he came to Karakalpakstan as a member of the Khorezm archaeological and ethnographic expedition of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. The expedition was headed by a well-known scholar S.P.Tolstov. Savitskiy discovered for himself an applied Karakalpak folk art. His passion for this kind of art was a main reason that caused him to leave Moscow for Nukus forever. Savitskiy learned painting from the famous Russian artists R.Falk, N.Ulyanov and K.Istomin. As a landscape artist, he discovered the richness of the natural scenery in Karakalpakstan. Most of his paintings were made outdoors. They depict in a precise and picturesque way the peculiar charm of Karakalpak nature. Savitskiy has no superfluous elements in his paintings. The obvious lyricism, sincerity and love for nature captivate his audience. A born colourist, he could easily have relied mainly on colour for effect but chose not to. For him the issues of pleine air, light and colour were inseparably linked with an acute perception of the beauty of nature like no other. Savitskiy was awarded the title of Honoured Art Worker of the Soviet Socialist Republic of Uzbekistan, People’s Artist of the Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic of Karakalpakstan and laureate of the Republican Prize of Berdakh. In 2002, Savitskiy was awarded (posthumously) the Order of “Buyuk Khizmatlari Uchun”(For Distinguished Services).

Kalaly-Gyr at Noon. 1953

Oil on canvas, carton. 37,7x70

Shemyakin Michail (1943)


Oil on plywood.45x68

Studied at the Secondary Art School at the Repin Academy of Art. His passion for the impressionists and old German masters led to his expulsion from the School without the right to study in other educational establishments. Shortly afterwards Shemyakin was sent to a mental hospital with a diagnosis “inert schizophrenia”. There he was allowed to paint, but his paintings were taken away: the professor used his and other patients’ pictures to explain the cause of their disease. Self-taught, Shemyakin took up work as scaffolder at the Hermitage to be able to copy the works of masters. Repeated “collisions” with KGB (State Committee for Security) forced him to decide between languishing in mental hospitals and emigrating. Shemyakin chose the second option and left for France in 1971. From 1981, the artist lives in the USA. The artist’s works in the collection of the State Museum of Art belong to an earlier period of his life.


Oil on carton.36x50

Shevchenko Alexander (1883-1948)

Wife’s portrait.1905

Oil on canvas. 107x102

While at the Real School, A. Shevchenko took up drawing which enabled him to enter the Stroganov School. In early 1905, he left for Paris where he took classes from Carriere and attended many workshops and studios. He studied museum collections and made sketches and studies in Boulogne, Saint Cloud, and Versailles. In 1906 his works were exhibited in the Salon of the Independent Artists. In Paris he got to know Altman, Benois and Diaghilev. On return to Russia, Shevchenko actively participated in the exhibitions of the Moscow Association of Artists, the “Donkey Tail” association, “Mishen” (Target) and “#4” . His passion for the impressionists and Cezanne did not tempt him to imitate them rather be guided by them in his search for an individual style. A talented teacher, Alexander Shevchenko, had such bright students as R.Barto, B.Golopolosov, E.Zernova, B.Kapterev, K.Suryaev and others.

Woman with buckets.1914

Oil on canvas. 123x100

Shigolev Sergey (1895-1951)

Sun. 1927

Gouache on carton. 68,7x52; 67,3x50,2

Graduated from the Vladimir Real School. From 1918 to 1920 he worked at the Museum of Natural History in Vladimir. In 1920, he moved to Moscow and entered the Natural Faculty of the Moscow University. During 1921-1923, he worked as an art decorator and attended the Theatre Studio named after F.Shalyapin, where he besides his actor’s work also made sketches of masks, costumes and theatrical characters. His acquaintance with theatre workers Yu. Zavadskiy, V.Fotiev and others fell on that period. In 1927, he joined the “Amaravella” group. Participated in exhibitions of the “Amaravella” in USA. (1927, 1928) and in the 6th exhibition “Life-Creation” (1929). In 1933, he began to make an animated cartoon. In the autumn of 1941, he joined people’s volunteer corps and his detachment was encircled by the German troops. In 1942, he was arrested.

Green rays. 1928

Oil on carton. 47,7x51,1

Shterenberg David (1881-1948)

Still-life. 1948

Oil on canvas. 77x93

Studied at the School of Fine Arts, the Academy Vitti, in Paris under A.Martin, Van Dongen, and E.Anglade (1906-1912). Took part in exhibitions from 1912. Member of OST (Society of Easel Painters) association (1924-1932, Chairman). Worked as a teacher at the State Free Art Studios, VKHUTEMAS- VKHUTEIN (Higher Art Technical Studios-Higher Art Technical Institute), in 1920-1930. In 1918-1920, he was a head of the Department of Fine Arts of the “Narcompros” (Ministry of Public Education). In 1922, he was appointed Commissar of the first Soviet Foreign Exhibition (Germany, the Netherlands). In 1924, Shterenberg was Art Director of the Russian Department of the International Exhibition in Paris.

Shukhaev Vasiliy (1887-1973)

Nude with a basin. 1925

Oil on canvas. 146,5x113

Graduated from the Stroganov School of Art and Industry and St.Petersburg Academy of Art (Kardovskiy’s studio). In 1912-1914, the artist lived in Italy where he received an allowance from the Young Artists’ Promotion Association in Rome. In 1920, he left Russia for Finland, then France. In the 1930s’ Shukhaev travelled across the southern part of France and visited Spain and Morocco. The impressions he gathered there formed the basis for a whole series of his works (“Morocco woman in a pink dress”). In 1935, the artist returned to the USSR, and in spring of 1937, he was sentenced on a charge of “espionage”, to 9 years of correctional labour camp. Shukhaev was discharged in 1945. From 1947, he lived in Georgia.

Landscape.Turen. 1929

Oil on canvas. 60x83

Shyukin Yuriy (1904-1935)

Red banners

Oil on paper. 16,6x51

Before 1917, he studied at the Voronezh gymnasia, then went on his education at the United Labour School. In 1919-1920, he studied at the Voronezh Free Art Studios under S.Romanovich and N.Maksimov.He participated in decoration of revolutionary celebrations. In 1922-1930, he studied in VKHUTEMAS- VKHUTEIN (Higher Art Technical Studios-Higher Art Technical Institute), where he studied under P.Konchalovskiy, I.Rabinovich and V.Sakhnovskiy. While a student and over the subsequent five years, Shyukin decorated parades, the mass staged processions devoted to celebrating revolutionary dates and events. Painting and graphic papers were produced by the artist with straight forward simplicity associated with children and folk masters. He was able to produce greatly varying works almost simultaneously. But his perception of life and conveyance of his impressions testified that the artist was a dreamer and fantast. Image - metaphors, public shows, grotesque and lyricism formed the basis of Shyukin’s creative activity. In 1935, Shyukin contracted tuberculosis and died.

Girl in a dress with a white collar

Oil on canvas. 70x55

Smirnov-Rusetskiy Boris (1905-1993)

Buddha of the evening light. 1924

Paper, gouache.48,5x64

He began to draw from his earliest childhood. In 1917 his family moved to Moscow. From 1920, attended the Art Studio of the Higher Shooting School under the guidance of A.Mankov. In 1921, he tried to pass his examination in VKHUTEIN (Higher Art Technical Institute), but failed. He entered the Evening Department of the Moscow Institute of Engineering and Economy (1921-1926). Simultaneously attended I.Rerberg’s studio. During 1922-1924 he created series of landscapes “Transparency” influenced by A.Block’s poems and the music of Chopin, Shuman and List. His exhibition activity began from 1923 with the “Exhibition of the Five” (D.Sobolev, A.Mikuli, L.Lozovskiy, P.Fateev). In 1926 he met Rerikh, who advised him to study painting, and in the same year Smirnov-Rusetskiy successfully passed his examinations in VKHUTEIN. There his teachers were Favorskiy (wood-engraving),N. Kupriyanov (lithography) and I.Nivinskiy (etching). In 1927, he participated in the International Exhibition in New-York,organized by N.Rerikh and presented there two of his paintings. P.Fateev and A.Sardan also took part at the exhibition. This year a group “Amaravella” uniting the first cosmist-artists in the country, was finally formed. (P.Fateev,B. Smirnov-Rusetskiy, Vera Pshesetskaya (Runa), A.Sardan, S.Shigolev, V.Chernovolenko). In 1930, B. Smirnov-Rusetskiy abandoned VKHUTEIN and became a post-graduate student at the Institute of Metals. This fact determined his further career and he made a number of discoveries and researches in the sphere of physical metallurgy. But he continued to paint. He travelled a good deal in the North, Caucasus, Crimea, Kazakhstan, Karelia, Baltic countries, Ukraine, Altay and the middle regions of Russia. He participated in several exhibitions. In June, 1941, Smirnov-Rusetskiy was arrested and spent 10 years in correctional labour camps. In 1956, he was rehabilitated.

Mother of Pearl. 1923

Tempera on wood. 32,8x49,8

Sofronova Antonina (1892-1966)

Constructive Linear Composition. 1920

Paper, water-colour. 20,9x20,1

In 1910, Sofronova entered the Moscow School of Art under the direction of F.Rerberg. In 1913 changed the School for I .Mashkov’s studio. After 1914, she participated in the “Jack of Diamonds”, “World of Art” and “Moscow Association of Artists” exhibitions. In 1920, Sofronova was employed as a teacher at the State Free Art Studios in Tver, at the same time as Mikhail Sokolov teaching stint there. Her passion for constructivism characterized Sofronova’s work of that period. The artists from group “13” were very close to Sofronova’s work, so she was invited to participate in their 3rd exhibition in1931. The stellar works of the artists of the exhibition in no way complied with the nascent art of the totalitarian state, socialist realism. The critics were relentless: her works were branded “formalistic”. For many years, Sofronova was not able to exhibit her works and worked only for her own satisfaction. Despite this she did not abandon her principles.

Constructive Composition.Triangles and Circles

Paper, ink, pen 21,2 ? 20,1

Sokolov Michail (1885-1947)

Constructive still-life with two lemons

Paper,ink, Indian ink.17,6x15,6

In 1904-1907 Sokolov studied at the Stroganov School of Art and Industry. Until 1909, he served in the Baltic Military Fleet. Before 1938, he worked as a teacher at various art classes, vocational schools and at the Institute of Advanced Training of Artists and Designers (1936-1938). In March 1938, Sokolov was sentenced by the court of justice to seven years in labour camps in Siberia. His work was first exhibited in the “World of Art” exhibition of 1917 and was clearly influenced by the French art of the late 19th and early 20th century. Sokolov combined teaching work at the studios in Tver (1920-1922) with his graphic work. In his drawings, the artist refers to the tools of the Avant-Garde movement, cubicized forms and displacement. The artist skill and adaptability meant he could improvise brilliantly both in graphics and painting.

Forks and a knife against background of landscape. 1919-1921

Paper, sepia.22x17,7

Sokolov Pyotr (1886-1967)

Draft of the Composition 1922.

Paper, ink, pencil drawing.11,7x11,6

In 1919, he graduated from the Second State Art Studios with a degree in Lithography. In the same year, he was sent by the Department of Fine Arts of the Public Education Ministry to teach at the Voronezh Free Art Studios, headed by Anna Boyeva, his wife. In 1921, the couple returned to Moscow. In the middle of the 1950s they became members of the etching studio of I.Nivinskiy. Obviously, Pyotr Sokolov’s life was nor easy. In his application to the Commission for Examining the Personnel of Painter’s Section of the MOSKH (Moscow Union of Artists) in 1945 the artist mentioned his hard living conditions and absence of studio.

Builder. Sketch. 1922.

Paper, pen, ink. 17,3x10,6

Stavrovskiy Arkadiy (1903-1980)

Typhoid. 1932

Oil on canvas. 53,5x45

Graduated from Department of Theory and History of Art of the First Moscow State University. While at the University, he studied painting at various studios but mainly at that of Lentulov. He served in the navy. From 1926, he was a contract artist for publishing houses. He participated in exhibitions of the “Existence” association and AKHRR (Association of Artists of Revolutionary Russia). With the beginning of Great Patriotic War (1941-1945) Stavrovskiy was conscripted into the army. After demobilization he worked on a contractual basis at the Moscow Association of Artists and made a number of monumental paintings in Tambov and Zlatoust for the Palace of Culture. Stavrovskiy’s works in the collection of the State Museum of Art show no trace of officialdom and are as if created for a limited audience.

Guitar and masks. 1937

Oil on canvas. 120,5x100,5

Suryaev Konstantin (1900-1965)

Café of restaurant “Landysh”. Moscow.1920

Water-colour on paper and carton.31,2x42,6

He was born in Riga. His parents were divorced and his mother brought up five children alone. Did not complete his studies at the Faculty of Industrial Aesthetics of VKHUTEMAS- (Higher Art Technical Studios) choosing instead to work at home. Soon, he joined the group of young artists who had been students of Alexander Shevchenko. In 1926 and 1928, the group exhibited their works under the name of “The Painter’s Workshop”. Suryaev provided 30 pieces of art for the exhibition. But the official critics judged the event harshly. During the same period, Suryaev travelled across Central Asia. His brother Semyon was also a talented artist, but he burnt down all his works and completed his life in the mental hospital. After the Second World War, he worked at the Glavkhudojprom (Main Art Industry) as a leader of the decorative toys department. He sometimes prepared models of dolls himself. It was only in the twilight of his life, living on his pension, that the artist could devote all his time to painting. Suryaev was confident in his talent, but completely devoid of vanity and never aspired to display his works in public.

At the Café. 1962

Oil on canvas/101x79,5

Tarasov Nikolay (1896-1969)


Oil on canvas.102x90

Born in Moscow. His father was employed in the church, which influenced Nikolay’s destiny in that he obtained a degree in music (singing), from the synod school. In 1925, he graduated from VKHUTEMAS- (Higher Art Technical Studios), Department of Easel Painting. Circumstances required him to earn a living by singing in various church choirs and concerts, but nothing could force him to abandon painting and drawing. His creative heritage comprises a great number of pictures and graphic works. Once the minister of People’s Education visited an exhibition where Tarasov was exhibiting his “Portrait of M.B.” and said: “Take this shit away!”. After that insulted artist decided never exhibit his works. The artist’s works are marked by a unique freedom in selecting subjects and images. The unfailing naturalness and elegance of each stroke and each daub of colour form a strict regularity and rhythm giving a dramatic and lyrical effect to the content that were deeply felt by the author.

Temptation of St.Anthony

Gouache on paper.63,5x48,1

Telingater Solomon (1903-1969)

Sketch of the cover “Quality of qualities”. 1920s.

Paper, ink, water colour. 29,2x 21,6

? Telingater studied at the Art Studios of the Ministry of People’s Education in Azerbaijan, then in VKHUTEMAS- (Higher Art Technical Studios) in Moscow (1920-1921). From 1925, he worked in many journals and publishing houses. Telingater was one of the first illustrators of A. Block’s poem “Twelve”. He paid much attention to drawn types (prints), regarding them to increase the expressiveness of book design. In 1963, he was awarded Iohan Gutenberg Prize for his distinguished services in the sphere of book designing art.

Sketch of the play-bill. “Theo Comedy” Theatre. 1921.

Paper, ink, white paint.25,2x20,3

Timirev Vladimir (1914-1938)

Quiet bay. Astrakhan

Water colour on paper.35,4x29

Graduated from the Vocational School of Construction. Upon completion his first year (1930), he worked on the construction site of the Bobrikov Chemical Industrial Complex. After graduation, he worked as an artist-illustrator. Jack London’s book “Northern Tales” was published with Timirev’s illustrations. He published his drawings in newspapers for the reviews of theatre plays. Timirev participated in a science and research expedition to the Caspian Sea (1935) where he produced many sketches, drawings and water colours on the subject of the Caspian Sea. He also created a series of works about Vyshniy Volochok. He was arrested in 1938 and shortly afterwards executed by shooting. Apparently, the cause was denunciation made by people close to the Timirevs, due to the fact that artist’s mother was Kolchak’s mistress. (Admiral Kolchak was one of the White Army leaders who fought against Communists during the Civil War in Russia (1918-1920).

Coloured sails. 1930s.

Paper, water colour, pencil drawing 23,5 ? 32,8

Tsaplin Dmitriy (1890-1967)

On bent knees.1920-1924

Wood. 105x57x24

In 1917 he studied at the Higher Art Studios in Saratov. In 1925, he moved to Moscow. In 1927, visitors of his exhibition purchased his works for the first time. In 1927-1935, he was sent to a trip abroad: Paris, Palma de Majorka (Spain), etc., where he participated in many exhibitions. After returning to Russia, Tsaplin was proclaimed to be “formalist” and “modernist”. His creative work proved not to be in demand and was forgotten for long years. The artist’s works are monumental. Deliberately heavy forms with dynamics and expression of the image evoke an impression of monumentality.

Ulyanov Nikolay (1875-1949)

Paris vitrines.

Oil on paper and carton. 49x70,2

He received his primary education in the Eletsk Parish School (1887). This year his parents moved to Moscow, where he entered the icon-painting studio (1887-1889). Then he took classes in painting from V.Meshkov (1888-1889). Studied at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture under N.Ghe, N.Nevrev, I.Pryanishnikov and V.Serov (1889-1900). After graduating, he worked as an assistant to V. Serov in the Free Studio of the School (1900-1903). Worked as a teacher at the art studio of E.Zvantseva (1901-1907) and during these years he got to know Tolstoy, Chekhov, Diaghilev and Stanislavskiy, as well as the artists from the “World of Art”. Along with producing paintings and graphic works, he decorated plays in Stanislavskiy and Meyerhold’s theatre-studio and in the Moscow Art Theatre. Became acquainted with the artists from the “Golden Fleece” journal and “Blue Rose” association, such as P.Kuznetsov, K.Sapunov, M.Saryan and S.Sudeykin. A trip across Italy (1907) and long stay in France and Germany (1909-1912) provided him with an excellent opportunity to study European art. In 1914 Ulyanov conscripted to the military service but soon afterwards released because of his ill health. He worked as a teacher of drawing at the Stroganov Art School (1915-1918), at the VKHUTEMAS and at the Fine Arts Department of the Prechistenskiy Practical Institute (1919-1921). Participated in activity of the artists’s association “Four Arts” (1925). In 1942-1944, Ulyanov was sent to Transcaucasia (Nalchik, Tbilisi), then to Samarkand, where he worked as a professor at the evacuated Moscow Surikov Institute of Art.

Samarkand. Evening. Ulugbek madrasah.1943.

Oil on canvas.54x64

Viting Nikolay (1910-1991)

Panic. 1926

Oil on ply-wood. 48,7x37,5

Since his parents were good amateur artists, Nikolay began to paint from his childhood, at the age of six. Then, in the late 1920s and early 1930s he attended classes at the House of Artistic Education in Moscow and at the artists’ association “Painters Workshop”. In 1934 he entered the Moscow Art Institute (later named after Surikov), at the studio of S.Gerasimov. The exhibitions of German expressionists had an impact on formation of the artist’s creative mind. He prefers restrained colours, approximately monochromatic ones, but this method doesn’t reduce an expressive character of his works. His painting “Panic” was one of his earliest works (1926) created under the influence of Sergey Eisenstein’s film “Battleship Potyomkin”. Viting adhered expressionism to some extent during all his life. The artist was in friendly relations with Savitskiy and considered him one of few genuine experts in the sphere of art, who had a strong will and could “change the world”.

Still-life with electric magnets. 1936

Oil on canvas. 52x36,5

Yustitskiy Valentin (1892-1951)

Group with a fish

Paper, carton, gouache. 43,8x30,8 ; 29,9x20,4

After graduating from the Page Corps in St. Petersburg, he studied at Ya.Goldblat’s Art Studio in Vilnus. In 1913-1914, he took private classes in sculpture in Paris. From 1915, onwards, he participated in exhibitions of the Association of Artists, the artist-fantasts, a group of “13” and many others.In 1918-1935, he lived in Saratov, where he headed the studio of painting and drawing at the Saratov Proletkult (Proletarian Culture Organization). He also worked at the theatre as a producer, composer, sketch-maker for the costumes and decorations. In 1923, his solo exhibition at the State Radishchev’s Museum was held in Saratov. In 1936, he lived in Moscow, where he illustrated books. In 1937, the Moscow City Court of Justice sentenced him for 9 years of imprisonment in the correction and labour camp and 5 years of exile under the pretext of Yustitskiy’s anti-Soviet Propaganda. Yustitskiy could return to his work only in 10 years in Saratov (1946), where he was sent into exile.

Selling trousers

Paper, carton, gouache. 20,6x30

Zhegin Lev (1892-1969)

Group with red cloth

Charcoal on paper, coloured cardboard, pencil. 24,5x24,1; 17,3x23

Studied at the School of Painting and Drawing under K.Yuon and I.Dudin in Moscow (1909-1910), and the Moscow School of Painting,Sculpture and Architecture under N.Kasatkin and S.Miloradovich (1911-1918). During the same years he attended the law faculty of the Moscow University. In 1913 L.Zhegin for several months studied the modern Western European art, visited museums of Paris, London, Rome. V.Mayakovskiy’s first book “Me” (1913) was designed by his young friends L.Zhegin and V.Chekrygin. Zhegin regularly presented his works at the exhibitions of associations “World of Art” (1917-1921), “Art-Life”, “Makovets” (1922-1925), “Way of Painting” (1926-1930). Participated in decoration of Moscow devoted to the first anniversary of revolution (1918), worked as a teacher at the House of Art in Sokolniki district of Moscow (1920), the Moscow Proletcult studio (1920-1925). An author of books and articles on art theory.


Charcoal on paper. 31x32,5

Zimin Grigoriy (1901-1983)

Illustration for the book “Scryabin in a dance of Lukin”. 1922-1923

Print, collotype.27,6x20

Began studying at the commercial school but left before completing the course. In 1919, he entered the State Free Art Studios, the former School of Painting,Sculpture and Architecture, in the studio of sculptor S.Konenkov. He was art director in charge of decorating celebrations in honour of the revolution and decorated three pavilions for the Agricultural Exhibition, one of which was on horse breeding. Zimin’s favourite artists were Falk, Malevich, Kandinskiy, Tatlin, Konenkov, Deyneka and Mukhina. He also liked Mayakovskiy. Experimented with graphics and decorative and applied arts.

Illustration for the book “Sodom”. After a prick. 1924

Paper, ink, pen. 19,3x14,1

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