Estructura / International Art 1900-1945 / Soviet Photography, Photomontaje and Photobooks

The Archivo Lafuente collection ‘Soviet photography, photomontage and photobooks’ is formed of over 800 photographs and related material: negatives, postcards and cameras. The images (dating from between 1917 and 1972) are fundamental to understanding Russian history in the first half of the twentieth century: the Revolution, avant-garde artistic experimentation, Stalinist industrialisation policies and agricultural collectivisation, the First World War and its repercussions, everyday life in the Soviet Union and the image that the regime wanted to convey are just some of the themes depicted.

A significant proportion of the photographs are signed, having been captioned by their creators with detailed textual information on the places in which they were taken, the people photographed or the circumstances that are documented.

Within the collection the works of Aleksander Rodchenko and Yevgeny Khaldei are joined by other exponents of Soviet photography from the time, such as Max Alpert, Dmitri Baltermants, Boris Ignatovich, El Lissitzky, Arkady Shishkin and Georgi Zelma.

In addition to this, the collection also includes a series of photobooks and photomontages; that is, the photographic publications used by the authorities once they had realised that they were more effective in reaching the masses in a country with a high rate of illiteracy. Of particular note in this section are copies of the magazines USSR in Construction and SSSR na stroike (designed by Lissitzky, Rodchenko and Stepanova, with photographs by Rodchenko himself and Max Alpert) and legendary titles, such as Dlia golosa (1923), by Mayakovsky and Lissitzky; Pro eto. Ei i mne (1923), by Mayakovsky and Rodchenko; and the work of Malevich and Lissitzky, O novykh systemakh v iskusstve: Statika i skorost (1919).

 



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