Kazimir Malevich

(redirected from Black Square)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.

Malevich, Kazimir Severingvich


Born Feb. 11 (23), 1878, near Kiev; died May, 15, 1935, in Leningrad. Soviet artist.

Malevich studied in Moscow at the School of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture in 1904 and 1905 and at the studio of F. I. Rerberg from 1905 to 1910. He participated in several exhibitions, including the Jack of Diamonds (1910), the Donkey’s Tail (1912), and the futurist 0.10 (1915-16). In the first decade of the 20th century, Malevich strove to combine the principles of cubism and futurism (Haymaking, 1909; A Station Without a Stop, 1911). He later became one of the pioneers of abstract art. Malevich explained his own work in a vague and mystical way. He reduced a physical object to combinations of the simplest geometric forms. These forms contrasted in color and were scattered about a plane. This artistic theory, which is known as suprematism, led from the very beginning to a denial of the social and cognitive tasks of artistic creation and painting proper (Black Square, 1913). In 1918, Malevich designed the set for the first staging of V. V. Mayakovsky’s Mystery-Bouffe.

In the early 1920’s, Malevich became interested in industrial and applied art. As a teacher in the People’s School of Art in Vitebsk (1919-22) and the director of the Leningrad State Institute of Artistic Culture (1923-27), he did research on the formal vocabulary of the plastic arts. He also worked out functional designs for dishes, designed textiles, and drew models for a new type of spatial organization. In the early 1930’s, Malevich made efforts to return to representational painting and to address himself to Soviet themes (The Girl With a Red Staff, 1932). All the aforementioned paintings are in the Tret’iakov Gallery.


Ot kubizma k suprematizmy. Paris, 1916.
Suprematizm. Vitebsk, 1920.
Essays on Art: 1915-1933. New York, 1971.


Fedorov-Davydov, A. Vystavka proizvedenii K. S. Malevicha. Moscow, 1929.
Reingardt, L. “Abstraktsionizm.” In the collection Modernizm. Moscow, 1973. Pages 112-15.
Kasimir Malevich: 1878-1935. An Exhibition. … London, 1959.


Mentioned in ?
References in periodicals archive ?
If, for example, every black square on the chessboard contains a consonant and every white square a vowel then it will tend to be amenable to making words in the rows, columns and on the knight's tour, since the knight's tour alternates colors (as do the rows and columns).
Yet the legacies of Black Square, inseparable as they are from the utopian aspirations of historical avant-garde movements, comprise multiple conflicting narratives.
Many family members and friends changed their profile pics to a black square to signify their support.
For each value i [member of] [n - 1], if i + 1 is to the right of i, place a black square on the sash, and if i + 1 is to the left of i, place a white square on the sash.
In both the black square off-centered in the central red disk seems a Suprematistically asymmetric pair of Malevichian forms, while the surrounding irregular but segmental red, white and black broken rings, their beginnings and endings radially determined, have a smooth, tightly fitted character, like machined bearings, and as such, seem of more Constructivist ilk.
These registers of visibility are compounded by disparate modes of legibility that simultaneously invite a decoding (the black square as a token of abstract modernism, specifically Malevich) and a re-encoding or encryption (the tiny blemish on the black square) that resist decipherment.
Langosta [white label, black square, printed] // ex Dichroplus / elongatus [white label, handwritten] // Holotypus [printed] [masculinidad] [handwritten] / Protodexia / australis Blnchd / T.
In scenes where he is seen from the front, a small black square covers his private parts.
The company will also add a beaded collection to its lacquered chargers, as well as color to its square shapes, with Halo Red and Black Square.
A series of Black Square Paintings at first appear to be a sticky black impenetrable mass, but close up, reveal themselves to be detailed night-time woodland scenes.
The pattern across the whole board should be that no black square is next to another black square.
On a white computer screen, three objects were visible: a black square 20 pixels wide, a white square 50 pixels wide with a black border, and a horizontal black line 1 pixel wide.