During 1915, in the midst of the war years that preceded the Russian Revolution, Kazimir Malevich devised and displayed a completely unprecedented geometric style of painting that he called Suprematism. By the 1920s, geometric art had become an international phenomenon. John Milner examines Malevich's art of geometry by looking at its sources of inspiration, its methods and its meanings and, arguing persuasively that it is based on obsolete Russian units of measurement rather than the decimal system, has found a new interpretative tool with which to understand this pioneering art.
Milner describes Malevich's early work (pointing out his sensitivity to Russian and West European art, with their diverse traditions of depicting time and space) alongside contemporary developments in physics and mathematics, including theories such as that of the fourth dimension. He closely examines Malevich's designs for the 1913 futurist opera Victory over the Sun, the first major public manifestation of the artist's remarkable synthesis of proportion, perspective, mathematics, and futurist imagery.
Malevich's subsequent display of Suprematist paintings, in 1915, was based on an elaborate system of space and proportion which even determined the actual hanging of the exhibition. Milner shows that his proportional system derived from the ancient Russian units of the arshin and the vershok. Sixteen vershok make one arshin, and one arshin is equal to 71.12cm. Malevich, along with his contemporaries, was drawing upon both traditional and modern mathematical theory to create some of the most influential, coherent and dynamic non-objective paintings of this century.
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Book Description Yale University Press, 1996. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Never used!. Bookseller Inventory # P110300064179