Monday, February 13, 2012

Malevich, Kasimir

Complex Presentiment: Half-Figure in a Yellow Shirt
Oil on canvas
39 x 31 1/8 in. (99 x 79 cm.)
State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg

Kazimir Severinovich Malevich (1879 – 1935) was a Russian painter. He was a pioneer of geometric abstract art and the originator of the Avant-garde Suprematist movement.

"No phenomenon is mortal," he wrote in an unpublished manuscript, "and this means not only the body but the idea as well, a symbol that one is eternally reincarnated in another form which actually exists in the conscious and unconscious person."

Malevich was fired with the desire 'to free art from the burden of the object' and launched the Suprematist movement, which brought abstract art to a geometric simplicity more radical than anything previously seen. He claimed that he made a picture 'consisting of nothing more than a black square on a white field'.
He died of cancer in Leningrad on May 15, 1935. His influence on abstract art, in the west as well as Russia, was enormous.