beauty details backstage at gareth pugh fw14
SOMOV, KONSTANTIN ANDREYEVICH
Painter and graphic artist. Master of retrospective paintings, portraits, landscapes and still lifes. Born to a family of an art historian and guardian at the Hermitage A.I.Somov. From his early childhood he was well versed in the work of “The Small Dutch”. From 1888 he attended nature classes at the Academy of Arts, then, from 1894-1897 the class of I.E.Repin. During his studies at the Academy he made friends with artists who later formed the World of Art group. In 1899 he took part in the group’s first exhibition. In 1897-1899 Somov went to Paris where he studied at the F.Colarossi Academy. A member of the URA (1903-1910) and member of the Academy of Arts (from 1914). In 1923 he travelled to New York with a Russian art exhibition. From 1925 he lived and worked in Paris. In 1896 K.A.Somov renounced the Impressionist painting manner acquired during his time at I.E.Repin’s studio. He created retrospective paintings under the Symbolist influence. Lady in Blue (1897-1900) marks his mature creative period. The favourite subjects in his “confidential” paintings are ladies and gentlemen, and Harlequins and Columbines who take their ironic place on life’s puppet stage. The longing for beauty in art of the past was combined with irony in Somov’s work, caused by the awareness that past visions are fragile. His contemporary, poet M.A.Kuzmin wrote about the world the artist created: “Fussiness, irony, the puppet drama of the world, the comedy of eroticism, motley masquerade monsters, guileful light of candles, magic – a skull hidden under pieces of cloth and flowers, automatism in the poses of love, death and fear in polite smiles. Oh, how wonderful our gallant Somov is! What a terrible mirror he offers to the laughing celebration”. The master created these themes in his graphic work of the 1900s, such as “Echo of Time Passed” (1903) and The Harlequin and the Lady (1912). In the late 1900s Somov produced a series of portraits of artistic characters from the Silver Age: “Portrait of A.A.Blok (1907), “Portrait of M.A.Kuzmin” (1909), etc. Over time the artist remained loyal to his favourite themes and subjects shaping perfection in his manner which combined the exquisite style of Art Nouveau with art from the past. While the artist was living in Paris during the 1930s, he discovered the secrets in the art of the old masters and created a number of original works in the still life genre. The last years of his life, were spent, as in his early years, among artists of the former World of Art group.
New York circa 1905. Luna Park circle swing, Coney Island.
Leonora Carrington ~ Surrealist painter
British-born Mexican painter, sculptor and writer Leonora Carrington (1917-2011) was born in Lancashire, northern England to an aristocratic family. Presented to King as a debutant, objected to the traditional life style of the English upper class, against her parents’ wishes, she began to study art. Moved to Paris and got involved with Surrealism and the artists with that movement such as Max Ernst, Andre Breton, Salvador Dalì and more. When the Germans invaded France, she fled to Spain, later to Mexico City. Becamse friends with Remedios Varo, Leonor Fini, Frida Kahlo, Diego Rivera and more. Married, had two sons, painted, wrote several books. In 2008, Carrington’s “Juggler” sold for more than $780,000 at Sotherby’s. Sadly, Leonora Carrington passed away on May 25, 2011, in Mexico City at the age of 94.