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Joan Marter

[Aleksandr ]

(b Kiev, Ukraine, May 30, 1887; d New York, Feb 25, 1964).

Ukrainian sculptor, active in Paris and in the USA. He began studying painting and sculpture at the School of Art in Kiev in 1902 but was forced to leave in 1905 after criticizing the academicism of his instructors. In 1906 he went to Moscow, where, according to the artist, he participated in some group exhibitions (Archipenko, p. 68). In 1908 he established himself in Paris, where he rejected the most favoured contemporary sculptural styles, including the work of Rodin. After only two weeks of formal instruction at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts he left to teach himself sculpture by direct study of examples in the Musée du Louvre. By 1910 Archipenko was exhibiting with the Cubists at the Salon des Indépendants, and his work was shown at the Salon d’Automne from 1911 to 1913.

A variety of cultural sources lies behind Archipenko’s work. He remained indebted throughout his career to the spiritual values and visual effects found in the Byzantine culture of his youth and had a strong affinity for ancient Egyptian, Gothic, and primitive art that co-existed with the influence of modernist styles such as Cubism and Futurism....


Swedish, 20th century, male.

Born 1893; died 1976.


Christian Berg belongs to the pioneering generation of modern Swedish sculpture. Influenced from the 1920s by the rhythm of geometric Cubism, he was also interested in the so-called 'classical' sculpture of 1900. He sculpted reliefs with hollows and negative volumes, as well as reliefs in the round with positive volumes. In the scale and harmony of his sculpture, Berg approaches the spirit of antiquity in his reflective and well-constructed work....


Lewis Kachur

(b Argenteuil-sur-Seine, Seine-et-Oise, May 13, 1882; d Paris, Aug 31, 1963).

French painter, collagist, draughtsman, printmaker and sculptor. His most important contribution to the history of art was his role in the development of what became known as Cubism. In this Braque’s work is intertwined with that of his collaborator Pablo Picasso, especially from 1908 to 1912. For a long time it was impossible to distinguish their respective contributions to Cubism, for example in the development of Collage, while Picasso’s fame and notoriety overshadowed the quiet life of Braque.

His family moved in 1890 to Le Havre, where his father had a painting and decorating business. In 1897 Braque entered the municipal art school, where he met and became friendly with Othon Friesz and Raoul Dufy. He joined them in Paris at the turn of the century and, after a year of army service, settled in Montmartre in 1902. He began to visit the Musée du Louvre, where he encountered van Gogh’s work, and that October he began to study at the Académie Humbert, where his fellow students included Francis Picabia and Marie Laurencin. The following year he studied briefly with ...


Susan Compton

[Shagal, Mark (Zakharovich); Shagal, Moses]

(b Vitebsk [now Viciebsk], Belarus’, July 7, 1887; d Saint-Paul-de-Vence, Alpes-Maritimes, March 28, 1985).

French painter, draughtsman, printmaker, designer, sculptor, ceramicist, and writer of Belarusian birth. A prolific artist, Chagall excelled in the European tradition of subject painting and distinguished himself as an expressive colourist. His work is noted for its consistent use of folkloric imagery and its sweetness of colour, and it is characterized by a style that, although developed in the years before World War I, underwent little progression throughout his long career (see.g. I and the Village, 1911; New York, MOMA). Though he preferred to be known as a Belarusian artist, following his exile from the Soviet Union in 1923 he was recognized as a major figure of the Ecole de Paris, especially in the later 1920s and the 1930s. In his last years he was regarded as a leading artist in stained glass.

Chagall spent his childhood, admirably recorded in his autobiography, in a warm Hassidic family in Vitebsk [now Viciebsk], with frequent visits to his grandfather’s village home. He attended the traditional Jewish school but afterwards succeeded in entering the local Russian high school, where he excelled in geometry and drawing and determined to become an artist. At first he studied locally in the studio of ...


Ronald Alley


(b Szeged, March 18, 1888; d Paris, May 1, 1971).

French sculptor of Hungarian birth. He studied at the school of Decorative Arts in Budapest from 1904 to 1905. In 1908 he went to Paris and settled in the block of studios La Ruche, where he was a neighbour of Fernand Léger, Alexander Archipenko, Henri Laurens, Marc Chagall and Chaim Soutine. He joined the Cubist movement in 1911, and he was included by Marcel Duchamp in the Salon de la Section d’Or in 1912. Only three of his pre-1914 sculptures survive, two Heads (e.g. 1914; Saint-Etienne, Mus. A. & Indust.) and a Clothed Figure (1913; Paris, Pompidou), which show a progression from a style still influenced by Rodin to a blocklike simplification and Cubist faceting. Volunteering for the French Army in 1914, he was unable to make any more sculptures until his return to Paris in 1919, when he acquired French citizenship; his immediate post-war work was much more abstract. After making in ...



Christopher Green and John Musgrove

Term derived from a reference made to ‘geometric schemas and cubes’ by the critic Louis Vauxcelles in describing paintings exhibited in Paris by Georges Braque in November 1908; it is more generally applied not only to work of this period by Braque and Pablo Picasso but also to a range of art produced in France during the later 1900s, the 1910s and the early 1920s and to variants developed in other countries. Although the term is not specifically applied to a style of architecture except in former Czechoslovakia (see Czech Cubism), architects did share painters’ formal concerns regarding the conventions of representation and the dissolution of three-dimensional form (see §II). Cubism cannot definitively be called either a style, the art of a specific group or even a movement. It embraces widely disparate work; it applies to artists in different milieux; and it produced no agreed manifesto. Yet, despite the difficulties of definition, it has been called the first and the most influential of all movements in 20th-century art....


French, 20th century, male.

Born 17 January 1889, in Paris.

Sculptor, draughtsman.

Georges Deniker studied under Manolo (Manuel Ugne), while at the same time training for the consular service. He was involved in the Cubist movement. During the 1914-1918 war he apparently served in a balloon unit and it was during this period that he invented 'string sculpture'. He later exhibited in Paris at the Salon d'Automne and the Salon des Tuileries. While posted to China he studied the ancient Chinese masters and returned to France with numerous drawings....


Francis M. Naumann

(b Blainville, Normandy, July 28, 1887; d Neuilly-sur-Seine, Oct 2, 1968).

French painter, sculptor and writer, active also in the USA. The art and ideas of Duchamp, perhaps more than those of any other 20th-century artist, have served to exemplify the range of possibilities inherent in a more conceptual approach to the art-making process. Not only is his work of historical importance—from his early experiments with Cubism to his association with Dada and Surrealism—but his conception of the ready-made decisively altered our understanding of what constitutes an object of art. Duchamp refused to accept the standards and practices of an established art system, conventions that were considered essential to attain fame and financial success: he refused to repeat himself, to develop a recognizable style or to show his work regularly. It is the more theoretical aspects implicit to both his art and life that have had the most profound impact on artists later in the century, allowing us to identify Duchamp as one of the most influential artists of the modern era....


Marie-Noelle de Grandry-Pradel

(b Damville, Eure, Nov 5, 1876; d Cannes, Oct 7, 1918).

French sculptor and draughtsman. The second son of a Normandy notary, he played a central role in the development of modern aesthetics, as did his elder brother Jacques Villon and his younger brother (Henri-Robert-)Marcel Duchamp. He came from an educated family and was an assiduous student at secondary school in Rouen; in 1894 he registered at the Faculté de Médecine in Paris, where he attended classes for several years. Rheumatic fever forced him to break off his studies in 1898 just before completion and left him immobilized for a considerable length of time; this unforeseen event altered the whole course of his life. During this period of enforced leisure (1899–1900), he modelled small statuettes (of subjects such as familiar animals and female figures), discovering his true vocation as a sculptor. He was essentially self-taught and rapidly attained a high level of mastery and maturity. He settled in Paris ...


Mark Allen Svede

[EKR; Est. Eesti Kunstnikkude Rūhm.]

Estonian group of painters and sculptors active from 1923 to c. 1930. The group continued the progressive internationalist orientation of their predecessors in the Young Estonia movement and united a new generation of painters committed to Cubist experimentation. The group was founded in Tartu by Eduard Ole (b 1898) and Friedrich Hist (1900–41), joined by Felix Randel (1901–77, named Johansen until 1936). Their work, like that of much of their colleagues, was primarily distinguished by modest geometricized abstraction and decorative colourism suggested by Synthetic Cubism, rather than by explorations of simultaneity, collage etc. It also often displayed strong characteristics of Neue Sachlichkeit and Purism. The earliest Estonian practitioners of Cubism were among the group’s members: Jaan Vahtra (1882–1947) and Hist, who from 1921 studied in Latvia, where he kept company with the modernists of the Riga Artists’ group. In 1924 EKR exhibited in Tartu and Tallinn with the Latvians, by which time membership had grown with the critical additions of ...


Italian, 20th century, male.

Born 1915, in Bassano del Grappa.


Toni Fabris was a student at the Accademia di Brera in Milan. He creates abstract works, constructed according to a concept of space and emptiness that has its roots in Cubism. He also makes films about kinetic sculpture, and has executed a monumental sculpture for a school in Milan....


Vojtěch Lahoda

(b Chropyně, Moravia [now Czech Republic], April 4, 1882; d Prague, Oct 6, 1953).

Czech painter, printmaker, sculptor, writer and collector. After a short period at a business school and in an insurance office in Brno, he became a student at the Academy of Fine Arts in Prague (1903). In 1904 he won the Academy’s first prize. At the end of the year he set out on a lengthy journey to Germany, the Netherlands, Belgium, France and Italy. He became absorbed in the Old Masters, especially Rembrandt. His own style passed from Post-Impressionism to a more expressive dominance of colour. In 1907 he took part in the first exhibition of The Eight (see Eight, the) with a programme painting, the Reader of Dostoyevsky (Prague, N.G., Trade Fair Pal.), partly influenced by the Munch exhibition in Prague in 1905. At the same time the picture is a very personal manifesto reflecting the Angst and scepticism of his generation. At the second exhibition of The Eight in ...


Hungarian, 20th century, male.

Active in Germany from 1920.

Born 1888; died 1932.

Sculptor, draughtsman, designer.


Sándor Gergely studied in Germany. His sculpture, abstract in aim, was associated with a tempered Cubism. He exhibited for the first time in 1918 on the premises of the magazine ...


Karel Srp

(b Dvůr Králové, Aug 3, 1889; d Prague, June 2, 1927).

Czech sculptor and draughtsman. One of the outstanding Czech sculptors of the early 20th century, he had a considerable influence both during his lifetime and subsequently. He studied at the Central School of Ceramics at Bechyně from 1903 and then under Professor J. Drahoňovský at the School of Applied Arts in Prague (1905–9) where his exceptional plastic sensibility became apparent. He then spent a year in Paris at the atelier of Emile-Antoine Bourdelle. Gutfreund’s work can be divided into two contrasting periods: the first, beginning in 1910, is largely Cubist while the second, beginning c. 1919, shows a move to realistic sculpture. (Unless otherwise stated, all sculptures by Gutfreund mentioned below are in Prague, National Gallery.) His early work was influenced by Michelangelo’s Slaves (c. 1514; Paris, Louvre; see fig.) and by Honoré Daumier’s modelling and treatment of light, which jointly inspired Anguish (1911) and ...


Czechoslovak, 20th century, female.

Born 25 June 1922, in Ubislavice, near Nová Paka.


Vera Januskova was a student at the school of decorative arts in Prague from 1942 to 1948. After a first period influenced by Cubist ideas of volume and construction, in around ...


Isabelle Monod-Fontaine

(b Paris, Feb 18, 1885; d Paris, May 5, 1954).

French sculptor, collagist, printmaker and illustrator. He came from a family of coopers and c. 1899 joined the studio of a sculptor of building ornaments, practising direct carving on building sites and studying academic drawings in the evenings. In 1902 he settled in the Montmartre district of Paris, where in 1905 he met Marthe Duverger, whom he later married. His portrait of Marthe and other early works, most of which were later destroyed or lost, followed the example of Auguste Rodin. In spite of working in difficult and isolated conditions from 1905 to 1911, he managed to free himself from the influence of Rodin and other contemporary artists and began to study French Romanesque and Gothic sculpture, both from reproductions and by travelling around the Ile-de-France. After one of his legs was amputated in 1909, he lived briefly in the artists’ studio complex La Ruche in Montparnasse; on his return to Montmartre in ...


Alan G. Wilkinson

[Chaïm Jacob]

(b Druskieniki, Lithuania, Aug 22, 1891; d Capri, May 26, 1973).

French sculptor of Russian birth active in the USA. Lipchitz grew up in Druskieniki. His father, a Jewish building contractor, opposed his son’s desire to become a sculptor, but his mother was sympathetic and arranged for him to go to Paris in 1909. He arrived with no formal academic training and studied briefly at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts before transferring to the Académie Julian. Mornings were spent drawing and modelling from life; during the rest of the day he visited museums. Lipchitz’s early nudes and portraits of 1910–12 have much in common with the classicism of Maillol and Charles Despiau, although he himself suggested that they had a common source in Greek and medieval art. On a visit to St Petersburg in 1911, he became particularly interested in the Scythian sculpture collection in the Hermitage. Lipchitz remained fascinated with the sculpture of the great non-European traditions throughout his life, and was an ardent collector of non-Western (especially African) art....


Melissa McQuillan

(b Málaga, Oct 25, 1881; d Mougins, France, April 8, 1973).

Spanish painter, sculptor, draughtsman, printmaker, decorative artist and writer, active in France. He dominated 20th-century European art and was central in the development of the image of the modern artist. Episodes of his life were recounted in intimate detail, his comments on art were published and his working methods recorded on film. Painting was his principal medium, but his sculptures, prints, theatre designs and ceramics all had an impact on their respective disciplines. Even artists not influenced by the style or appearance of his work had to come to terms with its implications.

With Georges Braque Picasso was responsible for Cubism, one of the most radical re-structurings of the way that a work of art constructs its meaning. During his extremely long life Picasso instigated or responded to most of the artistic dialogues taking place in Europe and North America, registering and transforming the developments that he found most fertile. His marketability as a unique and enormously productive artistic personality, together with the distinctiveness of his work and practice, have made him the most extensively exhibited and discussed artist of the 20th century....


Latvian, 20th century, male.

Born 26 April 1896, in Cesis.

Painter, sculptor, potter, designer.

Romans Suta initially worked in Riga with J. Maderniek and then took a job at the city's school of fine art. He introduced the Latvian public to Cubism.

Moscow (MMA)

Paris (Mus. National de Céramique Sèvres)...


Christa Lichtenstern

[ Zadkin, Osip ]

(b Vitebsk, July 14, 1890; d Paris, Nov 25, 1967).

French sculptor, draughtsman and printmaker of Belorussian birth. He spent his childhood in Smolensk in a circle of cultured and assimilated Jews. His father was a convert to the Orthodox Church, and his mother came from an immigrant family of Scottish shipwrights. While staying with his mother’s relatives in Sunderland, northern England, in 1905, he attended the local art school and taught himself to carve furniture ornaments. At the age of 16 he continued his artistic training in London, taking evening classes in life drawing and making his living as an ornamental woodcarver. During this time he became friendly with the painter David Bomberg. He continued his studies at the Regent Street Polytechnic, London, and later, in 1908, at the Central School of Arts and Crafts, London, where he concentrated on techniques in wood.

Early works such as Volga Boatmen (1908; destr.) were oriented towards a socially critical realism. During a brief return to Russia in summer ...