Framing Russian Art

Framing Russian Art : From Early Icons to Malevich

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@font-face { font-family: Times New Roman ; }p.MsoNormal, li.MsoNormal, div.MsoNormal { margin: 0cm 0cm 0.0001pt; font-size: 12pt; font-family: Helvetica; }table.MsoNormalTable { font-size: 10pt; font-family: Times New Roman ; }div.Section1 { page: Section1; } The role of the frame in art can refer to a material frame bordering an image and to a conceptual frame - a text, for instance, which is to serve as a commentary to the visual image. What is the meaning of a frame in our understanding of what we see? Why, in some cases, does a frame seem necessary, while in others artists deliberately remove it? In Framing Russian Art, Oleg Tarasov investigates the role of the frame both literally and conceptually, both in the organization of the artistic space of a work of art and in the very perception of a visual image - an icon, a building, a painting, an etching or a photograph. Part One is dedicated to exploring the frame of the Russian icon and related arks, folding images and prints, from the Middle Ages to the late nineteenth century, including analyses of Grigoriy Shumayev's vast and extraordinary Baroque masterpiece, which he called 'the iconostasis of the life-giving Cross', and the sumptuous blending of medievalism and late Romanticism in the Church Not Made by Hands at Savva Mamontov's estate of Abramtsevo outside Moscow. Part Two examines the successive roles of the frame in Baroque imperial portraiture, the dynastic grandiloquence of the nineteenth century, the impact of Western ideas and new technology (photography in particular) on the celebrated battle painter Vasiliy Vereshchagin, and finally the impact of the vanishing frame in abstract art and Modernism. A captivating account of the cultural phenomenon of the frame and its ever-changing functions, this book will open many new vistas for students and scholars of Russian culture and art history.

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  • Hardback | 448 pages
  • 210.82 x 266.7 x 33.02mm | 1,723.64g
  • Reaktion Books
  • LondonUnited Kingdom
  • English
  • 81 colour illustrations, 152 black & white illustrations
  • 1861897626
  • 9781861897626
  • 397,958

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Review quote

'Richly illustrated, making available much popular iconographic material generally unfamiliar to Western readers ... a fascinating contribution to the cultural history of Russia.' - Times Literary Supplement 'Invaluable ... this remarkable book should be required reading for anyone with a desire to understand imperial Russian culture at a more than superficial level." - Slavonica 'This is not a book about the frame-maker's craft, but a lengthy discussion of the purpose of frames, borders and surrounds in Russian art and architecture. Bringing to bear great scholarship, generously illustrated with numerous reproductions of unusual and beautiful examples, it gives the reader much cause to ponder their functions.' - The Art Newspaper

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About Oleg Tarasov

Oleg Tarasov is Senior Research Fellow in the Department of Cultural History of the Institute of Slavic Studies (Russian Academy of Sciences), Moscow. He is the author of Icon and Devotion (Reaktion, 2002).

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