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Hoarfrost. 1910–1911

Goncharova Natalia,
Oil on canvas
101 х 132

State Russian Museum


From 1910–1911, Goncharova painted a series of paintings depicting winter subjects in which she was interested in the possibilities of using a black and white colour scheme. A few years earlier, she illustrated a collection of Tikhon Churilin’s poems, Hoarfrost the “rhythm of life and death” is signified by “black on white”. The frosted tree tops in the paintings are painted as generalized coloured dots with the help of Goncharova’s characteristic, fan-shaped bold strokes that fill almost the entire space of the canvas and are perceived as a frozen “prickly” kingdom, a “shroud”. The black rhythm of the silhouettes of the tree trunks and small figures of people divides it up with contrast.

Author's Biography

Goncharova Natalia

Goncharova, Natalia Sergevevna (1881, Nagayevo (Tula Province) - 1962, Paris)
Painter, graphic artist, theatrical designer. Studied sculpture at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture (1901-1909) and painting independently, enjoying the advice of Mikhail Larionov and attending Konstantin Korovin's studio. With Larionov organized the exhibitions of the Jack of Diamonds (1910), Donkey's Tail (1912), Target (1913) and No. 4. Futurists, Rayonists, Primitive (1914). Contributed to the exhibitions of the Golden Fleece (1908-1910), Second Post-Impressionist Exhibition (1912), Der Blaue Reiter (1912) and Erste Deutsche Herbstsalon (1913). Solo exhibition with Larionov at the Galerie Paul Guillaume in Paris (1914), introductory article to catalogue written by Guillaume Apollnaire. Illustrated and designed Futurist books. Designed for Sergei Diaghilev's Ballet Russes. Left Russia for Switzerland and then Italy to work for Diaghilev (1915). Settled in Paris (1919).

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