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Russian Avant-garde Painting by Ivan Kliun

Item ID:4837

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Important Russian watercolor painting / drawing on paper by famous Russian avant-garde artist Ivan Kliun. The painting measures 31.8cm (12.5”) x 24cm (9.4”) and is executed in the typical style of Kliun probably around 1920-1921. This very nice and original work of art is signed “I. Kliun” in Cyrillic Russian script at bottom right corner of the sheet and near the hand drawn black pencil border. Provenance: presented by the artist to a Polish family; later assigned to the family collection of Janina Szczyt in Brussels; acquired directly from descendent of late Janina Szczyt. The painting bears original Janina Szczyt – Bruxelles collection stamp seal plus collection’s inventory number that reads either KO8 or K08. The painting is an overall good condition with some minor staining due to time and age, but otherwise fresh and with lively colors. No restorations whatsoever had been carried out to this work of art and it is in its original and authentic state as received from previous owners. GUARANTEED AUTHENTIC PIECE! Scarce Russian avant-garde art collector’s piece and one of the important futurist, constructivist and suprematist works of art. Ivan Vasilyevich Kliun (Kliunkov) was born in 1873 in Bolshie Gorki village (near Moscow). Ivan Kliun has studied at the Art School in Penza. In 1889-1890 he studied at the school of the Society of the Encouragement of the Arts in Warsaw. From 1890-1905 he studied art at the studios of F.Rerberg, Il.Mashkov and V.Fisher in Moscow. From 1907 to 1914 he studied at the Academy of Arts in St. Petersburg. From 1910 to 1914 he has participated in exhibitions of the group of artists Soyuz Molodyozhi (Union of Youth) together with David Burliuk, Wladimir Burliuk, Kazimir Malevich, Pavel Filonov, Vladimir Tatlin, Yuri Annenkov and others. In 1915 Kliun participated in exhibitions of the group Tramway V. In the same year he joined the group of artists Supremus that was led by Malevich. In 1916 he together with artists-suprematists Kazimir Malevich, Aleksandra Ekster, Nina Genke, Liubov Popova, Nadezhda Udaltsova and others worked at Verbovka Village Folk Centre. From 1917 to 1921 Kliun was Head of the Central Exhibition Bureau of the Fine Arts Department of Narkompros. From 1918 to 1921 he taught at the VKhUTEMAS in Moscow. Ivan Kliun was a painter, graphic artist and sculptor who was initially a book-keeper with a penchant for drawing, and became involved in art relatively later in life than his contemporaries. He received formal training in the 1890’s in Warsaw, as well as the Academy of Arts in St. Petersburg before meeting Kasimir Malevich at Rerberg's studio in Moscow. Malevich introduced the provincial Kliun to the Russian avant-garde, which he embraced with enthusiasm. Exhibiting from 1910 (not least with the Union of Youth group), he demonstrated great competence in the new modes, often described as Cubo-Futurism. By 1915 he was producing works in the "Suprematist" style, which featured geometric shapes, and very simple forms, such as a single black circle on a blank canvas. These date mainly from the period 1915-24. He held an official position in art teaching after the revolution until 1921. Kliun is still thought of as a minor figure in Russian art and one could not regard him as innovative. His trajectory matched so many artists post-1905: from academic art to the eager pursuit of the various concurrent artistic revolutions/movements which burgeoned before and during WWI. Popova and Brancusi are but two examples. He had the misfortune however of being committed to the Russian revolution, a revolution which at first liberated and then enslaved Russian artists. He had little choice- with the rise of Stalin it was Socialist Realism, emigration or death. Socialist Realism was the usual choice made by leftist artists- the alternative was to abandon the revolution. He died isolated and no doubt alienated in 1943.


$8000.00 / €5714.29




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