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Article

Ewa Mikina

(b Zawory, nr Gdańsk, June 15, 1934).

Polish painter, sculptor and stage designer. He studied at the Higher School of Plastic Arts in Poznań between 1952 and 1958. His abstract work has a certain affinity with hard-edge painting and Minimalism. In his early paintings the circular or oval shape of the canvas restates the shape of the form painted on it and thereby becomes its real analogue (as in Double Circles and Circle Compositions, 1962–5). At about the same time he produced sculptures made from thin wire. In the paintings after 1965 the actual space becomes a part of the composition and begins to supplant painted, illusory forms; and the ‘empty’ space starts to play an increasingly important role (e.g. Structural Painting with Hole, 1965).

At the end of the 1960s Berdyszak produced the series of double and triple Integral Paintings, in which the initial formal composition is subjected to multiplication and modification. The sculptures from this period are loosely assembled groups of simple, geometrical elements that allow the viewer to rearrange them. Between ...

Article

John E. Bowlt

[Yevgeny (Gustavovich)]

(b St Petersburg, Nov 4, 1899; d Rome, Dec 14, 1972).

Russian painter and stage designer. His family moved to Western Europe in 1908 and his basic training was in Germany, Switzerland and France (apart from a brief residence in St Petersburg in 1914–18, when he received lessons in art from the painter Pavel Naumov and the architect Sergey Gruzenberg). In 1919 he enrolled at the Académie Ranson in Paris, attending courses under Edouard Vuillard and Maurice Denis, and two years later he exhibited at the Galerie Druet, Paris. From the late 1930s Berman worked increasingly in the USA, creating designs for ballet and other musical productions, for example for the Music Festival in Hartford, CT, in 1936. In spite of his cosmopolitan background, Berman maintained close connections with Russian artists, critics and dancers, collaborating, for example, with Serge Lifar on the production of Icare in Monte Carlo in 1938.

Berman lived in France from 1918 to 1939, although he also spent long periods in Italy, manifesting a particular interest in Renaissance art and architecture, which he interpreted in his studio paintings, some of which were shown at his one-man show at the Julien Levy Gallery in New York in ...

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Marc’alvise de Vierno

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Article

Kenneth Archer

(Yakovlevich)

(b Tarkhovka, St Petersburg, Aug 4, 1876; d Leningrad [now St Petersburg], Feb 7, 1942).

Russian graphic artist and stage designer. The son of a naval doctor, Bilibin was educated in St Petersburg, studying law at the University (1896–1900) and art at the school of the Society for the Encouragement of the Arts (1895–8); then, under Il’ya Repin, he studied at both Princess Maria Tenisheva’s Art School (1898–1900) and the Academy of Arts (1900–04). From 1899 he exhibited with the group known as the World of Art (Mir Iskusstva) and was elected chairman of its reconstituted exhibition society in 1916. He also contributed to the Mir Iskusstva journal. Meanwhile he taught graphic art at the school of the Society for the Encouragement of the Arts (1907–17).

Bilibin had a strong interest in Russian medieval and folk art and became famous for his book illustrations of Russian fairy tales, especially those by Pushkin. His most celebrated theatrical works were his set and costume designs for operas by ...

Article

Mark Allen Svede

(b Riga, Sept 6, 1943).

Latvian painter, stage designer and graphic designer. After a childhood spent in Siberian exile, he studied decorative art and trained as a painter in the Latvian Art Academy (1963–72), preparing for a career as a stage designer. Stage design and the applied arts were less constrained by Socialist Realist dictates during the 1970s, and he quickly became one of Latvia’s most innovative artists. His fluency with process art and installation, for example, was already evident in his designs for a 1973 Riga production of Žanna d’Arka (Joan of Arc) by Andrej Upīts, the stage metamorphosing from Minimalist cavity to an assemblage in Arte Povera style. Abandoning the theatre in 1987, Blumbergs continued his prolific output. His compositions, sometimes abstract, often figurative and allegorical, are notable within Latvian art for their spare elegance and uncontrived expressiveness, successfully combining grand literary allusion and subtle metaphysical content. His graphic virtuosity earned him a degree of international celebrity rare among his Latvian peers. Exceptional, too, for his political candour, he was a harbinger of ...

Article

Wojciech Włodarczyk

(b Pleszew, April 25, 1920; d Warsaw, Feb 2, 1980).

Polish painter, sculptor and stage designer. He studied at the Academy of Fine Arts, Warsaw, in the studios of Jan Cybis (b 1897) and Jan Seweryn Sokołowski (1904–53) between 1945 and 1948. He was a co-founder and later head of the Painting Section of the Club of Young Artists and Scientists (Klub Młodych Artystów i Naukowców), an interdisciplinary avant-garde institution that flourished in Warsaw between 1947 and 1949. In 1955, together with Zbigniew Dłubak and Kajetan Sosnowski he founded Group 55, which took a stand against the ideas of the exhibition at the Arsenal, Warsaw (see Arsenalists), and which formulated a programme of modern art. From 1956 to 1965 he ran the Galeria Krzywe Koło in Warsaw, which showed innovative work by Polish artists. Bogusz staged the First Koszalin Plein-air Art Session in Osieki (1963) and jointly organized the First Biennial of Spatial Forms in Elblag (...

Article

Alfonso Rodríguez Ceballos

[Santiago]

(b Piacenza, 1705; d Madrid, 18 or Sept 20, 1759).

Italian architect, painter, urban planner and stage designer, active in Spain. He was a pupil in Piacenza of the painters Bartolomeo Rusca (1680–1745), Andrea Galluzzi (fl 1700–1743) and Giovanni Battista Galluzzi (fl c. 1730–40). In 1728 he was one of a number of artists summoned to Spain by the Marchese Annibale Scotti to assist with the construction of royal projects that were already under way and to introduce an Italian influence in place of the French style that had been introduced by the Bourbon kings. He worked at the Aranjuez Palace with the French engineer Léandre Brachelieu (fl c. 1733–9) and then in 1735 became Director of Royal Works of Decoration. He specialized in quadratura painting and, in addition to his work at Aranjuez, where his fresco vault decorations provided fictive trompe l’oeil architectural settings for mythological figures executed by Rusca and ...

Article

Michael Howard

(b Vercelli, Piedmont, March 11, 1806; d Dijon, March 5, 1867).

French painter, illustrator, set designer and poet. He studied at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris under Guillaume Lethière from 1821. The Punishment of Mazeppa (1827; Rouen, Mus. B.-A.), inspired by the scene from Byron’s poem, in which Mazeppa is tied to the back of a wildly stampeding horse, is his most important early painting and one of the key images of the Romantic movement.

Early in his career Boulanger became friendly with Eugène and Achille Devéria. Through them he met Victor Hugo, who became his ardent supporter and the source of many of his most typical works. Among Boulanger’s illustrations were those for Hugo’s Odes et ballades (1829), Les Orientales (1829), Les Fantômes (1829) and Notre-Dame de Paris (1844). Boulanger interpreted the macabre and romantic quality of Hugo’s texts with an imaginative power and freedom that anticipated Redon (e.g. ‘...

Article

Ingeborg Kuhn-Régnier

[Erich]

(b Vienna, Jan 4, 1929).

Austrian painter, printmaker, stage designer and singer. He studied from 1945 to 1951 with Albert Paris Gütersloh at the Akademie der Bildenden Künste in Vienna, where his colleagues included Ernst Fuchs, Wolfgang Hutter (b 1928) and Anton Lehmden (b 1929), with whom he helped develop the style known as Phantastischer Realismus. He first exhibited his works with the Art-Club at the Zedlitzhalle. In 1950 he cycled from Vienna to Paris, also travelling to Spain, North Africa, Israel and Yemen. During this period he struggled to earn a living as a folk singer. From 1958 he lived and worked as an artist in Paris, but from 1964 he divided his time between Vienna and the house he had decorated himself in Ein Hod, an artists’ village in Israel.

Brauer’s early paintings were strongly influenced at first by the peasant paintings of Pieter Bruegel I in the Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna, and then by the work of Hieronymus Bosch; Brauer developed an anecdotal style, mainly depicting rustic landscape genre scenes. After ...

Article

Ludwig Tavernier

(b Berlin, Nov 2, 1909; d Bremen, Nov 17, 1973).

German painter. He studied under the wood-engraver Hans Orlowski and the stage designer Harold Bengen at the Kunstgewerbeschule, Berlin (1930–34). Bredow was inspired by Erich Heckel, Karl Schmidt-Rottluff and, above all, Max Kaus. His depictions of picturesque towns and harbours, coastal and mountain landscapes, fruit and flowers and, less often, of people were shaped by his quest for motifs that characterized the region. They show tensions between glowing, sometimes even incandescent colours and sparsely outlined forms, especially in the watercolours, for example Village Church in Greetsiel (1957; Chemnitz, Städt. Kstsamml.) or Hofwinkel mit Räucherhäuschen (1957; Halle, Staatl. Gal. Moritzburg). In some of his chalk drawings and oil paintings Bredow sought to portray the objective in an abstraction, reminiscent of the geometric idiom of Werner Gilles or the abstract expressionism of Ernst Wilhelm Nay.

G. Meissner: ‘Rudolf Bredow’, Allgemeines Künstlerlexikon, 13 (Munich and Leipzig, 1995) G. Meissner...

Article

Alberto Cernuschi

(b Fresnaye-sur-Sarthe, nr Alençon, July 11, 1899; d Paris, March 1, 1979).

French painter, illustrator and stage designer. He studied briefly at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Bordeaux and from 1917 at the Ecole des Arts Décoratifs in Paris under Eugène Morand (b 1885), whose innovative teaching influenced his later work.

Brianchon was an eclectic artist, and there are traces in his work of many of the styles that succeeded each other in Paris during the period in which he worked. Taking landscapes, cityscapes and images of women as his main subject-matter, he nevertheless managed to maintain a distinctive approach based on a harmonious colour sense and a concern with calm, silent or moonlit atmospheres. The Courtesans (1932; Paris, Mus. A. Mod. Ville Paris) and Rue La Fontaine (1946; Geneva, Petit Pal.) are typical of his work as a painter. He also produced murals (e.g. Symphony, 1936; Paris, Pal. Chaillot), book illustrations (e.g. lithographs for André Gide’s Le Théâtre complet...

Article

Carola Wenzel

[Ludovico] (Ottavio)

(b Mantua, 1636; d Vienna, 1707).

Italian architect and stage designer, active in Austria. He went to Vienna in 1651 as the apprentice of his father, Giovanni Burnacini (d 1655), the Venetian theatre architect who introduced to Vienna the system of stage design developed by Giovanni Battista Aleotti and who produced stage sets in the Florentine–Venetian style of Giulio and Alfonso Parigi and Giacomo Torelli. Lodovico Burnacini was his father’s assistant until the latter’s death and succeeded him in the office of theatre architect and imperial court engineer to Emperor Leopold I. Although he participated in the construction of various imperial castles in the vicinity of Vienna, Burnacini was mainly engaged in theatre design, developing his father’s style of stage settings and becoming the founder of the Viennese style, which had considerable influence on German theatre. Designs for 115 compositions and plays have survived, and many of Burnacini’s designs were reproduced as engravings in luxury editions of the libretti. Holograph drawings are preserved (Vienna, Österreich. Nbib.). They include religious themes, physiognomic sketches, figurines and grotesques as well as narrative illustrations....

Article

Andrew Causey

(b London, March 29, 1905; d Hastings, Oct 22, 1976).

English painter, illustrator and stage designer. As a student at the Chelsea Polytechnic (1921–3) and the Royal College of Art (1923–5) he became a talented figure draughtsman. In the second half of the decade he spent much time in France painting intricately detailed urban scenes, which depicted the low life of Toulon and Marseille. Works such as the watercolour Toulon (1927; priv. col., see Causey, cat. no. 33) were executed in a meticulously finished and vividly coloured decorative style. Burra usually used watercolour and tempera and occasionally collage oil paints.

Burra took ideas from Cubism, Dada (notably George Grosz) and, especially, Surrealism, but his work is also linked with the English satirical tradition of William Hogarth, Thomas Rowlandson and Isaac Cruikshank: Burra loved burlesque and poked fun at people’s pretensions and excesses of style and behaviour, as in John Deth (Homage to Conrad Aiken) (...

Article

Nelly Perazzo

(b Buenos Aires, Aug 28, 1897; d Buenos Aires, March 17, 1983).

Argentine painter, tapestry designer and stage designer. From 1922 to 1933 he lived in Europe, where he studied first in Germany at the artistic colony in Worpswede and then in Paris under André Lhote and Othon Friesz. He was untouched by the violence of German Expressionism, but he assimilated various influences in France, structuring forms in the manner of Cézanne, and combining these with the audacious colouring of Fauvism and the strict sense of order in Cubism, as in The Siesta (1926; Buenos Aires, Mus. N. B.A.)

On his return to Argentina, Butler applied these European influences to lyrical landscapes of the islands in the Parana Delta of the Tigre region near Buenos Aires, selecting unusual scenes into which he incorporated childhood reminiscences in the figures. Using arabesques to link nature and people in his essentially flat pictures, he projected himself on to the scenery of which he was so fond in pictures such as the ...

Article

Silvia Lucchesi

(b Ancona, Feb 22, 1910; d Rome, March 28, 1976).

Italian painter and stage designer. He studied at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Rome. Cagli exhibited for the first time as a painter in 1932 at the Galleria di Roma and the Galleria Il Milione in Milan, with Giuseppe Capogrossi and Emanuele Cavalli (1904–81). After a further group exhibition at the Galerie Bonjean in Paris in 1933, Cagli and his colleagues were among members of the second phase of the informal group the Scuola Romana. During this period Cagli became particularly close to Mirko, who married his sister in 1938. In an article of 1933 Cagli opposed the classical ideals of Novecento Italiano, putting forward his own preoccupation with the mythical and primordial. Nevertheless he expressed this within the current orthodoxy of a monumental figurative style. In the Battle of San Martino and Solferino (encaustic, 5.5×6.6 m, 1936; Florence, Uffizi), executed for the Milan Triennale, the re-expression of a mural technique and of an ancient epic form is fragmented into episodes that follow free associations and psychological analogies....

Article

Giuliana Ricci

(b Viadana; d Mantua, 1700).

Italian architect, stage designer and writer. He was the brother-in-law of Giacomo Francesco Motta, superintendent of the Teatro Grande in Mantua, whose surname he adopted and who probably assisted him in his youth. He began working at the court of Mantua as a painter c. 1650, later becoming general superintendent of buildings and prefect of theatres. In 1668 he built a theatre (destr.) for Luigi Fedeli at Mantua, with a proscenium arch similar to that introduced by Giovanni Battista Aleotti at the Farnese Theatre (1618–19), Parma. It had a central space bounded by two stepped levels, three tiers of boxes and an upper balcony. This theatre was the site of Carini Motta’s only documented stage designs, those for the Torneo a’piedi (1674), recorded in engravings accompanying the libretto published in Mantua. In 1688 he designed the Teatro dei Comici, Mantua, with five tiers of boxes as well as the parterre. Carini Motta also produced a considerable number of stage devices and machines; firework displays and ceremonial structures for the coronations of Popes Clement IX (...

Article

Anna Maria Fioravanti Baraldi

[Sellari, Girolamo; Ferrara, Girolamo da]

(b Ferrara, c. 1501; d Ferrara, ?Aug 1, 1556).

Italian painter, architect and stage designer. His father Tommaso (fl 1503–23) was a painter and decorator at the court of the Este in Ferrara, and Girolamo was trained in the workshop of Garofalo. He visited Rome in the early 1520s (Fioravanti Baraldi) and in 1525 was in Bologna, where he worked with Biagio Pupini and Giovanni Borghese on the decoration of the sacristy of S Michele in Bosco. Around this time (1525) he painted the altarpiece of the Virgin Enthroned with Saints (Dresden, Gemäldegal. Alte Meister; destr.) for S Biagio in Bologna.

From these early works onwards, da Carpi developed a pictorial language that combined the Ferrarese models of Garofalo and Dosso Dossi with the influence of such works by Raphael as the St Cecilia (Bologna, Pin. N.), which he saw in Bologna, the Madonna of Foligno (Rome, Pin. Vaticana) and the frescoes in the loggia of the Villa Farnesina in Rome. Da Carpi’s ...

Article

Antonello Negri

(b Castelfrentano, nr Chieti, May 17, 1938).

Italian sculptor and stage designer. He trained at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Rome and between 1954 and 1958 worked with the highly experienced teachers Leoncillo Leonardi, Pericle Fazzini and Ettore Colla. He produced a series of non-representational ceramic sculptures during this early period, but his more characteristic style was established during the early 1960s, when such subjects as people and the artefacts of modern daily life were treated, using unseasoned planks of wood carved in simple shapes in a craftsman-like manner, uncoloured, undecorated and often repeated in series (e.g. Last Supper, 1965; Rome, G.N.A. Mod.). This new style was shown for the first time in 1964 in an exhibition at the gallery La Tartaruga in Rome. Ceroli’s work at this time was influenced by Pop art, by the work of Louise Nevelson and Joe Tilson, and also by Arte Povera. His interest in the relationship between sculpture and its surroundings led him in the late 1960s to work in the theatre, designing and creating sets for numerous productions including Shakespeare’s ...

Article

Reinhold Misselbeck

[Hargesheimer, Carl-Heinz]

(b Cologne, May 19, 1924; d Cologne, Dec 31, 1971).

German photographer, sculptor, stage designer and theatre director. He studied graphic design and photography at the Cologne Werkschulen. In 1948 he made his first sculptures in metal, but he made his name shortly afterwards with experimental photographs and other experimental works. A member of the young German avant-garde, from 1951 he taught experimental photography at the photographic school BIKLA (Bild und Klang) in Cologne. In 1957 his first book, Cologne intime, appeared, and a year later he published Im Ruhrgebiet and Unter Krahnenbäumen (both with texts by Heinrich Böll), whose new photographic structures provoked violent reactions and public debate. His photography during this period was based on the collection of images, and he always attempted to penetrate the façades of buildings and of people.

After a series of publications about Berlin, the Rhineland and stocktaking, Chargesheimer turned to the theatre, working as a stage designer, director and photographer for theatres in Cologne, Vienna, Brunswick, Hamburg, Bonn and Kassel. He summed up this achievement in ...

Article

A. V. Ikonnikov

(Nikolayevich)

(b Shostka, Ukraine, Aug 22, 1901; d Moscow, Oct 29, 1981).

Russian architect and stage designer of Ukrainian birth. From 1923 to 1929 he studied under Aleksey Shchusev in the architectural faculty of the Vkhutemas (Rus.: Higher Artistic and Technical Workshops), Moscow. As a theatre designer he was responsible for the designs for productions in a number of Moscow theatres. He built the Polytechnical Institute (1929–31), Gor’ky (now Nizhny Novgorod), employing Constructivist devices, and his Neo-classical competition design (1931; with A. F. Zhukov; unexecuted) for the Palace of Soviets in Moscow received a first prize. Thereafter his work combined Neo-classical monumentality with contrasts of generalized forms and a widespread use of colour, for example the Tchaikovsky Concert Hall (1938–40), with a large elliptical amphitheatre, and the Peking Hotel (1939–51), both in Moscow. The freely-treated decorative classicism of the Komsomol’skaya (1935) and Kievskaya (1937) metro stations and the ground-level vestibule of the Dinamo metro station (...