Livre - Kandinsky and old Russia

C 4411



Yale university press

Weiss Peg 1932 - ...

Presentation materielle : XVII-291 p.

Dimensions : 25 cm

Vasilii Kandinsky, whom many consider to be the father of abstract painting, was also a trained ethnographer with an abiding interest in the folklore of Old Russia. In this provocative book, Peg Weiss provides an entirely new interpretation of Kandinsky’s art by examining for the first time how this commitment to his ethnic Russian heritage influenced the painter’s work throughout his career. Weiss describes Kandinsky’s university training in ethnography, his expedition to Russia’s Vologda province in 1889, his involvement as a student with the country’s most influential ethnographic group–the Imperial Society of Friends of the Natural Sciences, Anthropology, and Ethnography–and the literature he read while writing reviews for the society’s journal, Ethnographic Review. She shows that Kandinsky’s knowledge of Finno-Ugric, Lapp, and Siberian shamanism and folklore provided him with an indelible palette of iconographic references that resonated in his work–from his earliest paintings to his last. Identifying specific ethnographic and folkloristic motifs in his iconography, she argues that despite numerous stylistic changes, Kandinsky’s paintings consistently reflected an underlying message: his belief in the shamanist calling of the artist to provide a means of cultural healing and regeneration. Peg Weiss, research professor in the fine arts at Syracuse University, has published widely on Kandinsky and was the organizer of the exhibition Kandinsky in Munich, 1896-1914 for the Guggenheim Museum. “An extraordinary achievement. Weiss offers a profound reevaluation of Kandinsky’s work, completely reshaping Kandinsky scholarship and its conclusions.” –Reinhold Heller, University of Chicago

Acknowledgments, ix Introduction, xiii Abbreviations, xix 1. Kandinsky as Ethnographer, p. 1 2. Motifs of the Ethnographic Imagination, p. 33 3. The Artist as Shaman, p. 71 4. Painting as Shamanizing, p. 113 5. Drums and Canvas, p. 139 6. Metamorphosis and Shaman’s Journey Home, p. 175 Notes, p. 211 Bibliography, p. 255 Index, p. 273

Bibliogr. p. 255-271. Index