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From the collection of the State Russian Literature Archives

11 August - 30 September 2005
Benois Wing

The ARCHIVEryimportant Avant-Garde exhibition reflects almost all stages and trends in the history of Russian Avant-Garde from the first Futuristic experiments of David Burliuk, Kirill Zdanevich, Elena Guro, Olga Rozanova and Alexei Kruchenykh to retrospective return to the creative experience of the 1910s in the latest drawings of the poet and artist Vasily Kamensky. The exhibition showcases works by such world-famous masters as Vladimir Tatlin, Alexandra Exter, El Lissitzky, Marc Chagall and Mikhail Larionov, as well as by those less known to the general public — K. Redko, V. Kulagina, N. Shifrin, M. Tsekhanovsky, I. Rabinovich, which allows to represent the diversity of creative quests of the 1910-30s more fully. Works by Constructivists El Lissitzky, Gustav Klucis and Kliun Ivan play a special role in the exhibition. The name of Vladimir Tatlin ranks first. His early paintings, graphic portrait of Kazimir Malevich (1912-13) and a Monument to the III International model (T. Shapiro, reconstruction of the 1960s) are presented at the exhibition. Among the stage designs stored in the Russian State Archive of Literature and Art there are works of such stage reformers as A. A. Vesnin, G. B. Yakulov, A. A. Exter. The exhibition showcases Exter?s costume designs for the famous plays of the Chamber Theatre Famira the Kithara Player (1917) and Romeo and Juliet (1921). Here are also highly interesting photographs made in the 1920-s by the Choreologic Section of the State Academy of the Art Sciences. These unique images illustrate the variety of tendencies that existed within the "art of motion" at that time: from the experiments of choreographers-innovators or the dance as a form of "agitation poetry" (as A. Lunacharsky defined it) to the unpretentious dances performed in music-halls and aimed at "the lower classes". Along with such exhibits there are also documents: birth certificates, letters, autobiographies, questionnaires, whose data was intentionally changed or concealed in the biographies written later. The exhibition is organized by the Russian Archive of Literature and Art (Moscow). The objects shown are stored in the funds of the Archive, and many have never been exhibited before.