1 September 2022, 04:55

Book graphics and other works by Pavel Kovzhun

Book graphics and other works by Pavel Kovzhun
In the first half of the 20th century, an important place among Ukrainian graphic artists and art theorists was occupied by the artist Pavlo Kovzhun, a futurist and constructivist who used baroque elements in his work. Born in 1896 in the village of Kostyushki (Zhytomyr region), spent his childhood in Belaya Tserkov, later moved to the Crimea, where he received a basic education, and graduated from an art school in Kyiv. Kovzhun's teachers were Nikolai Pimonenko, Alexander Murashko, Ivan Makushenko and other outstanding artists and teachers. At that time, there was a cultural explosion in the world, which gave rise to a huge number of artistic movements; he also touched Ukraine.
In 1913, Mikhail Semenko, together with his brother Vasily, created the futuristic circle "Kvero", which included Kovzhun. The artist created graphic works in the spirit of futurism, but soon the style changed somewhat under the influence of the Baroque that interested him. Kovzhun rushed from one style to another until he discovered something new for himself - the work of George Narbut.
Artistic activity has become for Kovzhun the main source of income. He illustrated magazines and books, designed covers, but the money was still not enough to live on. Therefore, the artist decorated the churches, turning to the technology of polychromy - a multi-color coating of material in architecture. However, all this was not enough for a creative person: the love of art prompted the master to take up writing articles and monographs.
Kovzhun always preferred book graphics: after him there were a lot of bookplates, publishing signs, caricatures. His drawings graced the covers of books by Ivan Franko, poetry collections, almanacs. The works have repeatedly appeared at exhibitions throughout Europe: in Prague, Berlin, Rome, Warsaw. In the last years of his life, throughout the 1930s, Kovzhun taught at the Ukrainian Scientific Institute in Berlin.

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