06 December 2009

The Tradition of Constructivism

The artistic movement we know as constructivism began in Russia in 1920 as an attempt to define a new art for a new age and New Man. It spread to Germany, attaching itself to the Bauhaus movement, and then moved in the 1930s to France and Switzerland. In theory it continued after the second world war, but it was more evident in practice than in theoretical form, and it now finds modern reflections in the work of designers such as Neville Brody. This collection of manifestos, articles, and agit-prop documents represents the theoretical and propagandist side of the movement - and it must be said that it captures well the exuberance and desire to create something new which erupted from artists such as Naum Gabo, Vladimir Tatlin, El Lissitzsky, and Laszlo Moholy-Nagy. Editor Stephen Bann offers a prefatory essay, putting the documents into a historical context, and he supplies biographical notes to introduce each document, tracing the various intersections of the principle figures... Read more >>

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