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ICIF - Visions from Russia

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ICIF - Visions from Russia


Welcome to the work of Iakov Chernikhov - Ukranian born Russian Constructivist architect & artist [1889-1951]. What with another cold war looming over us and all, I thought I’d get this post on Chernikhov’s ridiculously siiick illustrations up now so as to avoid blacklisting.


Chernikov was born to a poor family, one of 11 children. After studying at the college of art in Odessa, he moved in 1914 to Petrograd (St. Petersburg) and joined the Architecture faculty of the Imperial Academy of Arts in 1916, where he later studied under Leon Benois. Greatly interested in futurist movements, including constructivism, and the suprematism of Malevich (with whom he was acquainted), he set out his ideas in a series of books in the late 1920s and early 1930s, including:
-The Art of Graphic Representation (1927)

-Fundamentals of Contemporary Architecture (1930)

-The Construction of Architectural and Machine Forms (1931)

-101 Architectural Fantasies (1933)


While hundreds of Chernikhov’s drawings/illustrations have gone ‘missing’ from the Russian State Archives, the Iakov Chernikhov International Foundation has a few hundred of them up on their website - and they’re all worth checking out [because they’re TOO ILL].

Now, what perusing all these constructivist visions has got me wondering is this: was there actually something about it as a movement that prevented a real expansion of constructivism throughout more of Europe and the US - or was it more about rejecting communism? Because if you look at it without considering it’s communist idealism and intentions, I feel as if you see a truly ‘modern’ [post-industrial revolution] design/building style. That being said, I’m glad I don’t live in a constructivist housing block - but still, the drawings are great…


::all images via the Iakov Chernikhov International Foundation::



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