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Article

John E. Bowlt

(Yur’yevich)

(b Smolensk, March 19, 1882; d Nyack, NY, Aug 12, 1946).

Russian stage designer and painter. He attended the School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture in Moscow from 1897 to 1909, studying mainly under Konstantin Korovin and Valentin Serov, but although he painted a few Impressionist landscapes, his first major artistic concern was with Symbolism, as in his paintings of the first decade of the 20th century such as Pastorale (1905; Moscow, I. A. Myasnikova priv. col., see Kogan, no. 2) and Love (1907; Moscow, E. A. Gunst priv. col.). After taking part in the exhibition Crimson Rose in Saratov in 1904, he became a founder-member of the Blue Rose group of Symbolist painters, who paid homage to the painting of Viktor Borisov-Musatov, and he developed their mystical motifs and contributed to their exhibition in 1907. Sudeykin was also in contact with the World of Art group, and, on the invitation of Serge Diaghilev, he travelled to Paris in ...

Article

Mark Allen Svede

(b nr Cēsis, April 28, 1896; d Tbilisi, Georgia, July 14, 1944).

Latvian painter, printmaker, ceramicist, interior designer, tage and film set designer and theorist. He was the foremost ideologue for modernism in Latvia and was one of its greatest innovators. His militant defence of avant-garde principles befitted his experience as a soldier and as one of the artists who, after World War I, was denied a studio by the city officials and staged an armed occupation of the former premises of the Riga Art School. At the end of the war he painted in an Expressionist manner: In Church (1917; Riga, priv. col., see Suta, 1975, p. 19), for example, is an exaltation of Gothic form and primitivist rendering. Unlike his peers Jāzeps Grosvalds and Jēkabs Kazaks, he was extremely interested in Cubism and Constructivism, the theories of which informed his paintings, drawings, prints and occasional architectural projects of the 1920s. At this time he and his wife, the painter ...

Article

Whitney Chadwick

revised by Amy Lyford

(b Galesburg, IL, Aug 25, 1910; d New York, NY, Jan 31, 2012).

American painter, sculptor, illustrator, stage designer, and writer. She studied at the school of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1932 before moving to New York, where she saw the exhibition Fantastic Art, Dada, Surrealism (1936–7; New York, MOMA) and was inspired to become a painter. After meeting Max Ernst in 1942 she became part of the group of exiled Surrealists living in New York during World War II; see Children’s Games (1942) and Eine Kleine Nachtmusik (1943). Her first one-woman exhibition took place at the Julien Levy Gallery in 1944.

One of Tanning’s first Surrealist paintings was the self-portrait, Birthday (1942; Philadelphia, PA, Mus. A.), influenced by the illusionistic Surrealism of René Magritte and Max Ernst that she had seen at the MOMA exhibition. To support herself in the 1940s, she worked as an advertising illustrator for Macy’s, and some of her paintings express an affinity with the conventions of fashion advertising (see ...

Article

(b Kaluga, Sept 21, 1898; d Grottaferrata, nr Rome, July 31, 1957).

American painter and stage designer of Russian birth, active also in Russia and France. He grew up in an advantaged and cultivated environment concerned with the arts. Educated by private tutors, he drew from an early age and attended art classes at the University of Moscow from 1916 to 1918. Moving south in 1918 to avoid the Revolution, he studied at the Kiev Academy until 1920 and worked with Alexandra Exter. He moved again in 1920, this time to Odessa, where he worked in the theatre, and then via Sofia in 1921 to Berlin, where he supported himself with theatre work and began to paint still-lifes, figures and portraits such as Natalie Glasko (1926; New Haven, CT, Yale U. A.G.)

From 1923 Tchelitchew lived in Paris, where his work underwent a fundamental change. He abandoned the brightly coloured Cubo-Futurist manner influenced by Exter in favour of a more realistic representation of objects treated as symbols of cosmic order: eggs, cabbages and constellations of stars. Soon he added figures in reflective, self-absorbed poses, such as ...

Article

Hans-Peter Wittwer

(b Lucerne, Aug 11, 1930; d Berlin, Nov 9, 1985).

Swiss painter, draughtsman and stage designer. He met Serge Stauffer (b 1930) in 1946, with whom he shared an admiration for Dada and Surrealism, and in particular for Hans Arp and Marcel Duchamp. In 1947 they started to exchange letters (some of which survive; see 1985 exh. cat.). Thomkins studied under Max von Moos (b 1903) at the Kunstgewerbeschule, Lucerne (1947–9), although he did not formally enrol at the college. He then attended the Académie de la Grande Chaumière, Paris (1950–51). In 1952 he settled in Rheydt, near Lucerne, where he created the autobiographical figure Schwebsel, analogous to Max Ernst’s Lop-Lop bird.

In 1954 Thomkins moved to Essen. He produced the first Vexierklischees (painted photographs) in 1955 (e.g. Ornamental Asparagus is Re-potted Here, 1956; The Hague, Gemeentemus.) and began to experiment with Lackskins, produced by letting oil paint drip on to a water surface and using paper to pick up the coloured paint as it spread and mixed with the water. In these works he was experimenting with the interplay between manipulation and chance, which he had observed in the work of the Surrealists. In ...

Article

Maria Cristina Bandera Viani

(b Florence, Nov 2, 1727; d Milan, Nov 14, 1812).

Italian painter and engraver. He trained in Florence with Agostino Veracini (1689–1762) and Francesco Conti (1681–1760), and studied architecture and stage design under Antonio Galli-Bibiena. His earliest known painting is a fresco of 1758: Heavenly Father in Glory in the Dominican church in Livorno. He enriched his art by the study of Correggio’s works in Parma, and also those of Bolognese painters, making engravings (1764–7) after paintings by Guido Reni, Agostino Carracci, Annibale Carracci, Guercino and others. These were praised in 1765 by Pierre-Jean Mariette and were later collected in an album entitled Venticinque quadri ai maestri eccellenti incisi da Giuliano Traballesi (Milan, 1796).

In 1764 he won a competition at the Accademia di Belle Arti di Parma with the painting Furius Camillus Liberating Rome from the Gallic Senones, a work that is deeply influenced by the Bolognese tradition and by the Roman classicism of Nicolas Poussin. The success of this painting won Traballesi major commissions in his native Tuscany, where the transition from Rococo to Neo-classicism had been encouraged by the reforms initiated by Leopoldo II Habsburg-Lorraine when he became Grand Duke of Tuscany in ...

Article

Fani-Maria Tsigakou

(b Piraeus, Jan 13, 1910; d Athens, July 20, 1989).

Greek painter, stage designer, illustrator and writer. From 1928 to 1934 he worked as an apprentice in the workshop of Fotis Kontoglou, studying from 1932 to 1934 at the Higher School of Fine Arts in Athens, where he was taught at the Asylon Technis Gallery. Like most of the avant-garde intellectuals of his generation, he became actively involved with the popular art movement and the search for a Greekness in art. He travelled extensively in Greece, and went to Constantinople (now Istanbul) and Asia Minor studying Byzantine music, painting, textiles and the traditional shadow theatre. In 1935 he went to Paris where he was influenced by Matisse, in particular by such works as Cyclist in a Mauve Singlet (1936; see Tsarouchis, pl. 23), and by Demetrios Galanis. After 1938 he contributed costume and set designs for both the National and the Karolos Koun Theatre in Athens. While serving in World War II he executed numerous sketches of soldiers; these men were to become his favourite subject. From ...

Article

Angela Tamvaki

(b Eleusis, Aug 19, 1914; d Athens, Jan 26, 1965).

Greek painter, stage designer and architect. He studied architecture at the National Technical University in Athens (1931–6). From 1937 to 1939 he worked as an architect. During the second world war he joined the Greek army, serving first in Greece and later in the Middle East. He was imprisoned and sentenced to death for his participation in the Middle East coup, but was pardoned in 1945–6. He moved to Brazil in 1947, where he worked with the architects Oscar Niemeyer, Lúcio Costa and Palumbo on the plans of Brasília; in the same year he worked in Paris on the development of St Cloud. From 1948 to 1961 he lived in Paris, where he painted and made stage designs and costumes (1948–55) for the theatre founded by him and his wife Christine, a leading actress of the avant-garde. In 1953 he had his first one-man show at the Studio Facchetti in Paris; this was followed by others, notably at the Galerie Iris Clert (...

Article

Ann Jones

(Samuel)

(b Sandy, Beds, May 17, 1900; d Penzance, Dec 18, 1971).

English painter. After studying design (1919–23) at the Royal College of Art, London, he worked as a textile designer and adviser, and was also active as a jazz musician. In 1929 he took up painting and became a part-time design teacher at the Central School of Arts and Crafts in London. Tunnard first painted romantic landscapes such as The Farm Pond (1933; Bradford, Cartwright Hall), but from the mid-1930s, under the influence of Klee and Miró, his work became more abstract and began to reflect his interest in plant and animal life and geology. After settling in the Lizard peninsula in Cornwall in 1933, he studied local wildlife and became an expert field botanist, collecting rare insects for the British Museum. The rhythmical designs in his work were inspired by these natural forms and perhaps also by his experience as a musician. Such paintings as Fulcrum (...

Article

Alan Bird

(Grigor’yevich)

(b Melitopol’, Ukraine, July 26, 1898; d Moscow, June 23, 1980).

Russian painter, graphic artist, stage designer and sculptor of Ukrainian birth. He was born into a Jewish family of carpenters. From childhood he was fascinated by itinerant showmen, puppeteers, gypsies and market traders who carried their wares in large baskets or their booths on their heads. From 1912 to 1917 he studied at the Kiev school of art. At the time of the 1917 revolution he was working in Alexandra Exter’s studio, where he met other young artists interested in the theatre, notably I. Rabinovich (1894–1961) and N. Shifrin (1892–1961). After service in the 12th Army he returned in 1919 to Melitopol’, where he created propaganda posters and cartoons for ROSTA (the Russian Telegraph Agency). In 1921 he went to Moscow and undertook some teaching in Vkhutemas (the Higher Artistic and Technical Workshops). He was a founder member of the Society of Easel Painters where, among other works, he exhibited ...

Article

(Jörgensen Hungerholt)

(b Kemi, 1927).

Finnish sculptor, painter, printmaker and stage designer. In 1938 his family moved to Sweden, where in 1945 Ultvedt enrolled at the Konsthögskola in Stockholm; the following year he attended Sven Erixson’s decorative art school in Stockholm. In 1947 and 1948 he visited Paris, and in 1950 he had his first one-man show at the Galleri Noa-Noa in Copenhagen. At this time he was producing drawings, watercolours and engravings. In 1954 he designed the décor for the ballet Spiralen, performed at the Konserthus in Stockholm. From the mid-1950s he turned to collage, welded-metal sculptures and wood-and-paper assemblages, producing such works as Pig Trough (1958; see 1988 exh. cat., p. 16), a rectilinear object made from fragments of wood. In the early 1960s he made a number of shallow relief works using open layers of wood, as in Mobile (1961; Stockholm, Mod. Mus.). From the same period were a number of installations using wood, wire and other materials that were loosely assembled and often included moving parts, as in that for the ...

Article

Daniel Robbins

(b Angoûleme, April 4, 1885; d Paris, March 25, 1937).

French painter, collagist, draughtsman and stage designer. A few years younger than most of the Cubists with whom he became associated, he received a traditional art education at the Ecole Nationale des Beaux-Arts in Paris from 1906 to 1910. He did not participate in any of the manifestations of Cubism that took place before World War I. His interest in the movement appears to have developed under the influence of Albert Gleizes, who painted his portrait while both served near the front in the 167th regiment at Toul in 1914–15. By 1916 Valmier was making small and very delicate collages markedly different from those of Picasso, Braque or Gris, composed of minutely fragmented surfaces.

In 1919 Valmier signed a contract with the dealer Léonce Rosenberg, for whose Bulletin de l’effort moderne he later designed a cover. Rosenberg gave him his first one-man exhibition at his Galerie de l’Effort Moderne, Paris, in ...

Article

Lynn Boyer Ferrillo

(b Dieppe, Aug 8, 1869; d ?Paris, Jan 2, 1952).

French painter, printmaker and stage designer. He spent much of his youth in Versailles, moving in 1887 to Paris, where he studied under Gustave Moreau at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts and under Jules Dupré at the Académie Julian. There he met Maurice Denis, Pierre Bonnard, Edouard Vuillard and Albert André. With a keen interest in both artistic precedents and contemporary trends, he absorbed in the mid-1890s the chief tenets of Impressionism, van Gogh’s work and Pointillism before slowly developing his own style. In 1895 he collaborated with Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and André on the set of Aurélien-François Lugné-Poë’s play Chariot de terre cuite, performed at the Théâtre de l’Oeuvre, Paris. Under Toulouse-Lautrec’s influence, his own works darkened both in colour and sentiment, for example Chez Maxim’s (1895; Geneva, Petit Pal.), in which he depicted two gaunt, severe-looking women seated in a murky café. By 1896 he painted contemporary French life with an overall sunnier, more optimistic air, as in ...

Article

John Richards

(b Rigoli, nr Pisa, 1348; d Pisa, after 1438).

Italian painter. The style of the altarpiece that is probably Turino’s earliest extant work, the Virgin and Child with Saints, Archangels and Angel Musicians (c. 1380; Palermo, Mus. Reg.), suggests he was influenced by Sienese painting, but this may have come via Barnaba da Modena, whose Madonna dei Mercanti (Pisa, Mus. N. S Matteo) is exactly reproduced in the central group. A Baptism of Christ of c. 1390 (Pisa, Mus. N. S Matteo) is closely based on the panel by Niccolò di Pietro Gerini (London, N.G.). In 1397 Turino signed and dated a panel of the Virgin and Child with Two Saints and Two Blessed (Pisa, S Paolo a Ripa d’Arno). In this and panels of the Virgin and Child with Angels (Paris, Louvre) and the Virgin Annunciate and the Archangel Gabriel (both c. 1395; Pisa, Mus. N. S Matteo) Turino’s style is more robust. Figures are larger and more ponderous, recalling earlier Florentine painting. Between ...

Article

Fani-Maria Tsigakou

(b Galaxidi, April 27, 1902; d Athens, March 22, 1985).

Greek painter, printmaker, illustrator and stage designer. He studied painting at the Higher School of Fine Arts in Athens from 1921 to 1927 and had his first one-man show in Athens in 1929. In the years that followed he had numerous one-man shows in almost all the capital cities of Europe and participated in 80 group exhibitions internationally. In 1930 he received an Academy of Athens award for his fresco designs for the church of St Dionysios the Areopagite in Athens (1930–39), the first of many ecclesiastical commissions in Greece, including St Vlassios of Xylokastro (1936–45), St Charalambos in Akrata and St Nicholas in Pefkakia. In 1935 he won commissions to design and execute the frescoes in SS Constantine and Helen, Detroit, MI. During and immediately after World War II he made illustrated manuscripts and woodcuts of Greek patriotic subjects. He was one of the founder-members of the ...

Article

V. V. Vanslov

( Vladimirovich )

(b Moscow, April 30, 1902; d Moscow, Dec 1, 1947).

Russian stage designer and painter. He studied in the studio of Vasily Nikitich Meshkov (1868–1946) during the 1910s and at Vkhutemas in Moscow under Pyotr Konchalovsky and Konstantin Korovin from 1918 to 1923. He was one of the leading members of the Society of Easel Painters from 1925 to 1929. He originally worked as a painter and illustrated children’s books; from 1929 he worked as a stage designer. As a painter he was noted for his portraits (e.g. of the director Konstantin Stanislavsky, 1933; St Petersburg, Rus. Mus.) and other works painted in a bold, energetic style with expressionistic overtones (e.g. Woman at a Window, 1930s; St Petersburg, Rus. Mus.)

Vil’yams’s stage designs included Mikhail Bulgakov’s Molière (1936) for MKhAT (the Moscow Art Theatre), Giuseppe Verdi’s La Traviata (1934; Moscow, Bakhrushin Cent. Theat. Mus.) for the Nemirovich-Danchenko Music Theatre, Moscow, and Nikolay Gogol’s Government Inspector...

Article

Marita Sturken

Culture of images and visuality that creates meaning in our world today. This includes media forms such as photography, film, television, and digital media; art media such as painting, drawing, prints, and installations; architecture and design; comic books and graphic novels; fashion design, and other visual forms including the look of urban life itself. It also encompasses such social realms as art, news, popular culture, advertising and consumerism, politics, law, religion, and science and medicine. The term visual culture also refers to the interdisciplinary academic field of study that aims to study and understand the role that images and visuality play in our society; how images, gazes, and looks make meaning socially, culturally, and politically; how images are integrated with other media; and how visuality shapes power, meaning, and identity in contemporary global culture.

The emergence of the concept of visual culture as a means to think about the role of images in culture and as an academic field of study is a relatively recent phenomenon, emerging in the late 1980s and becoming established by the late 1990s. There were numerous factors that contributed to the idea that images should be understood and analysed across social arenas rather than as separate categories, including the impact of digital media on the circulation of images across social realms, the modern use of images from other social arenas (such as news and advertising) in art, and the cross-referencing of cultural forms displayed in popular culture and art. It was also influenced by the increasingly visible role played by images in political conflict and a general trend toward interdisciplinarity in academia....

Article

Grischka Petri

(b Leverkusen, nr Cologne, Oct 14, 1932; d Berlin, April 3, 1998).

German painter, sculptor, décollagist, composer, video artist, and performance artist. He was one of the fathers of the European Happening movement. Vostell studied typography, lithography, and painting in Cologne, Wuppertal, Paris, and Düsseldorf (1950–58). In 1959 he married Mercedes Guardado Olivenza in Cáceres, Spain. Early in his career he discovered Décollage , a technique of cutting, tearing away or otherwise removing pieces of an image. His spelling of the term, dé-coll/age, underlined the term’s dialectical implications of destruction and creation. In the 1960s he worked with chemicals to transfer the process to photography, video, and film, turning it into an all-encompassing strategy of image deconstruction, often within the iconographic framework of violence and sexuality as communicated by mass media.

Vostell’s combined décollage with car parts and television sets, being one of the first artists using such a device as part of a sculpture in 1958. In 1962 he joined the ...

Article

(b Teufen, April 8, 1877; d Zurich, 1943).

Swiss painter, printmaker, illustrator and theatre designer. He studied with a decorative painter in Stuttgart and briefly at the Kunstgewerbeschule in Strasbourg (1902), though he was chiefly self-taught through study trips to Belgium, France, Spain, Italy and Japan, which impressed him deeply. His freely brushed, figurative style and preoccupation with such Symbolist artists as Ferdinand Hodler and Arnold Böcklin allied him with the avant-garde of his day. He was a member of the Berlin Secession, and the connections he made through the group, together with the acknowledged clarity of his stylish book illustrations, won him many commissions. In a prolific career he also produced costume and stage designs, wall frescoes and numerous prints. Later paintings showed his admiration for the flat, all-over colour planes of Cézanne. He was the brother of the writer Robert Walser (1878–1956) and illustrated a number of his books, for example Seeland...

Article

Peter C. Sturman

[zi Mojie ]

(b near Taiyuan, Shaanxi Province, ad 701; d c. 761).

Chinese poet, painter and Musician. One of China’s greatest poets, he was also a painter at a time when relatively few men of high social position practised this art. His reputation as a painter was limited in his own time, but his unparalleled stature as a man of letters attracted the attention of scholar–official painters of subsequent periods, who celebrated Wang Wei as the founder of the literati tradition of painting ( see China, People’s Republic of §V 4., (ii) ). Born into a powerful and prestigious clan, at the age of 15 he dazzled the Tang court at Chang’an (modern Xi’an, Shaanxi Province) with his precocious skills as a poet, painter, calligrapher and musician. He passed the metropolitan examinations to receive his jinshi degree at the age of 20 and was appointed Assistant Secretary of Music. He ended his career with the high office of Right Assistant Director of the Department of State Affairs....