Karetnikova Sofia

Suprematist composition 63x40 cm, oil on cardboard, 1923
About work

(Українська) Роботу “Супрематична композиція” можна розглядати як “плід розвитку мистецтва на шляху звільнення від усього поза художнім, граничного виявлення безпредметного, як сутності будь-якого мистецтва”.

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Sofia Karetnikova (1887-1930) was a Russian avant-garde artist of the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries.

Karetnikova received a systematic artistic education from I. Kish in Moscow. In 1912, together with other “Amazons” of the Russian avant-garde – Popova, Udaltsova, Pestel and Stepanova, she came to Paris, where she took lessons from Metzinger and Le Foconnier.

Beginning in 1914, S. Karetnikova participated in group exhibitions of Suprematists. Her works were exhibited at the fifth exhibition of the Suprematists in the summer of 1918, and then at the exhibition in 1919 together with V. Kandinsky, I. Yupon, L. Pevzner, L. Popova, V. Stepanova and O. Rodchenko.

Her husband was Karetnikov, director of the theater. Nemirovich-Danchenko, arrested in the 1930s, died in exile. In her 20s, the artist worked at the Tretyakov Gallery, then was also arrested and deported to Siberia, where she died tragically, committing suicide, learning of the death of her only son in the camp.

S. Karetnikova’s works are very different from the radicalism of the paintings of L. Popova and N. Udaltsova, they have a significant element of decorativeness.

Suprematism has become one of the central phenomena of the Russian avant-garde. Beginning in 1915, when the first abstract works by Kazimir Malevich were exhibited, including The Black Square, many artists experienced the influence of Suprematism. Suprematic works, representing the image of geometric figures of pure colors, became one of the first in Europe examples of pointless creativity. Ideas K. Malevich turned out to be very attractive, and the artist had many followers in Russia and abroad. Among such followers is Sofia Karetnikova.

In 1925-1928, exhibitions under the motto “Art for Workers” united young artists who had previously been members of various Moscow associations – “Wednesday”, “Moscow Salon”, the Circle of Artists of the Zamoskvoretsky District, and others. In early 1925, many of them participated in the exhibition “United Art” (OBIS).

And from 1925-1928 there were 3 exhibitions of the group of artists “Art for Workers”, in which, in total, 45 artists, graphic artists and sculptors took part, among whom S. Karetnikov was exhibited.

S. Karetnikov as an artist with a subtle sense of painting, feels the different energy of any object, color, shape and seeks to “work” with them, to organize them in the plane of the canvas on the basis of extreme minimalism.

Followers of K. Malevich, who was the artist S. Karetnikov, in their search came to the conclusion that Suprematism is the end and the beginning, when feelings become naked, art becomes “faceless”. And if life itself and objective art contain only “images of sensations”, then objectless art, the apex of which is Suprematism, seeks to convey only “pure sensations”. Such “picturesque science” was based on the search for “living worlds ready to fly into space” and occupy a special place there along with other cosmic worlds.

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