Margaret Betz

  • From Cézanne to Picasso to Suprematism: The Russian Criticism

    VIRTUALLY ALL THE WRITING that has appeared on the art of the Russian vanguard has commented intriguingly on how Russian artists responded, both pictorially and theoretically, to the influence of French painting.1 Malevich himself traced the development of his Suprematist style—of which the most severely reductivist image was the Black Square—through Futurism and Cubism back to Cézanne. My own title here is in fact a tribute to Malevich’s writings on this very subject. However, the Russian pictorial reaction to French art occurred in the context of a Russian critical response, in the press and

  • The Icon and Russian Modernism

    “REBIRTH OF RUSSIAN PAINTING” “rebirth of life,” “Russian Renaissance,” “a new era in creation,” “the beginning of a new culture”: such were the aspirations of the Russian artistic vanguard in the early 20th century.1 The Russian renaissance was, of course, encouraged by contact with artistic innovations in Western Europe. But during the years from about 1908 to 1915, native Russian sources were in constant ascendance over Western influence. Two completely different painting exhibitions of 1913 may be taken as paradigms for the resolution of these two opposing sources, Western and native: one