Olga Rozanova

Born: 1886, Melenki (Vladimir Province)
Died: 1918, Moscow

Painter, graphic artist, illustrator, designer, art theorist, poetess. Studied at grammar school for girls in Vladimir-on-Klyazma (1896–1904), Stroganov School of Art and Industry in Moscow (1904–10), Konstantin Juon and Ivan Dudin School of Painting and Drawing in Moscow (1907–10) and the Elizaveta Zvantseva School of Painting and Drawing in St Petersburg (1911). Member of the Union of Youth (1911–14) and Supremus (1916–17). Experimented with Neo-Primitivism and Cubo-Futurism (1911–15), before working in a decorative Suprematist style (1916–17) and painting a series of non-objective compositions called “colour-painting” (1917–18), which anticipated American Color-Field painting and Abstract Expressionism (1940s–50s). Met Alexei Kruchenykh (1912), whom she later married (1916). Illustrated Alexei Kruchenykh’s Futurist books (1912–16) and collaborated with him on the War album of linocuts (1915). Attended the lectures of the Italian Futurist Filippo Tommaso Marinetti in St Petersburg (1914). Moved to Moscow (1915) and designed clothes and works of applied art (1915). Published transrational poetry in Alexei Kruchenykh’s Valos miscellany (1917) and the fourth issue of the Art magazine (1919). Worked for IZO Narkompros, heading the art and industry section with Alexander Rodchenko and opening free studios of industrial art in Ivanovo-Voznesensk, Mstyora, Bogorodskoe, Abramtsevo and Sergiev Posad (1918). Printed articles in the Anarchy newspaper (1918) and helped to decorate the streets of Moscow on May Day and the first anniversary of the Bolshevik revolution (1918). Died of diphtheria in Moscow (1918). Contributed to the exhibitions of the Union of Youth (1911–14), Esposizione Libera Futurista Internazionale in Rome (1914), Women Artists for the Victims of War (1915), Tramway V First Futurist Exhibition (1915), Exhibition of Pictures of Left-Wing Tendencies (1915), 0.10 Last Futurist Exhibition (1915–16), Store (1916), Knave of Diamonds (1916, 1917), First Exhibition of Pictures of the Trade Union of Artists at the Art Salon in Moscow (1918), Exhibition of Moscow Futurists in Tiflis (1918) and Posthumous Exhibition of Paintings, Studies, Sketches and Drawings by Olga Rozanova at the First State Free Exhibition of Works of Art in Moscow (1918).

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