The writing and painting of Kasimir Malevich, the painter of the Black Square on a white background (the Quadrangle of 1915), have an aesthetic, philosophical, religious but also a political significance. They reveal a "virulent antisocialism from this socialist above all suspicion" (Martineau).
Malevich understood very early that communism state did not want to break with the "practical culture of objects" which will triumph with capitalism; and accused it of being "the destroyer of rest, aspiring to subdue and annihilate every thought"1 . That is why the painter proposed a social revolution linked with a revolution of form, which would allow to leave the old utilitarian world of objects (viechtch')2.
Our symposium will analyze the political and pictorial ontology of the founder of the Suprematist doctrine, contained in his famous book, Suprematism. The world without objects or eternal rest. In this perspective, we will study on the one hand his affinities with Hegel and the Young Marx, and in the other hand his links with Bolshevism, constructivism and anarchism. We will try to higlight the originality of his conception of the role of the State, of the Parties, of the Church and finally of his plan for a transition to a transnational or even cosmic policy. We will study the political meaning of Malevich's art in different periods: from his research period in the years 1909-1913 to the last paintings querying the figure, his patriotic loubki during the First World War and his Suprematist work.
Our symposium will study not only Malevich's work but also his administrative and official activities (in particular as a member of the Moscow Soldiers' Soviet, Commissioner for the Preservation of Monuments and Antiquities, Professor at the School of Art in Vitebsk, director of the Museum of Art Culture in Petrograd); and more generally his institutional role in the Russian avant-garde; which did not prevent the Soviet Regime from persecuting him during the early 1930s. Our symposium will have a multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary approach, inviting to a dialog between philosophers, art historians, culture historians and other specialists.
Related Topics :
- The dimension of space in Malevich's painting and vision of politics.
- The New man according to Malevich.
- The "face without face" (Martineau) in Malevich's art.
- Artistic and political iconicity.
- Art and utilitarianism (in particular the relations between Malevich and the Bauhaus).
- The place of Orient in the genesis of Malevich's art.
- The status of the image in Malevich's work (painting & writing).
- Malevich and the First World War.
- Malevich and Formalism.
- Malevich and the exhibition for the 15 years of the RSFSR in 1932.
- Malevich and artistic institutions (the Petrograd Art Museum, the National Institute of Artistic Culture in Petrograd, the Leningrad Institute of Art History).
- The crtique of Malevich's work by Marxist authors.
- Malevich, museums and exhibitions.
- Malevich as a professor.
- Malevich and A. V. Lounatcharski.
- Terminology and periodization.
Proposals / abstracts of 3000 signs (spaces included) must be sent to cpichonbonin[at]gmail.com and olivier.camy[at]sciencespo.fr
- 1. Quoted by G. Conio in his introduction of K. Malévitch, Le suprématisme. Le monde sans-objet ou le repos éternel , translation by G. Conio, Infolio, 2011, p. 33.
- 2. « À propos du problème des arts de la représentation » (1922) in K. Malévitch, Écrits, T. 1, translation and introduction by J-C. Marcadé, Allia, 2015, p. 279.