„The world as the perception of an idea, independent of the image – that is the elementary essence of art.“ Malevich, 1927
Revolution! In 1915 the Russian artist Malevich declared a Black Square on a White Background an icon of his times and thus founded a new form of art, liberated from objects – Suprematism. Supported by the Bolsheviks at first, his ‘formalistic’ art was soon considered counterrevolutionary.
50 years later, in 1989, the first comprehensive Malevich retrospective outside Russia was held in Amsterdam’s Stedelijk Museum. It is here that Barrie Gavin outlines the artist’s creative phases and his life story. In doing so, he discovers the most diverse ‘isms’ of the 20th century and one of the most significant pioneers of abstract art.