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Mikhail Larionov’s Rayonism and the Scientific Mythologies of the Late Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Century

Ekaterina Bobrinskaya    State Institute for Art Studies, Moscow, Russia    

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abstract

The article investigates the theory of non-figurative painting developed by Mikhail Larionov (Rayonism) and its connection to parascientific theories of the early twentieth century. One of the central scientific and parascientific mythologies of the time regarded the shift in the understanding of the idea of matter. The notion of ‘radiant matter’ had a prominent place in these mythologies. The article analyses a range of frameworks, within which the idea of ‘radiant matter’ was interpreted (from a scientific research of different phenomena provoked by invisible waves to spiritualist and occultist experiments). The iconography of these waves and the theories of the dissociation of matter represent an essential input to understand how abstract art emerged in early-twentieth-century Russian painting.

Pubblicato
11 Dicembre 2020
Accettato
31 Agosto 2020
Presentato
03 Luglio 2020
Lingua
EN

Keywords: RayonismMikhail LarionovRussian Avant-gardeAbstraction

Copyright: © 2020 Ekaterina Bobrinskaya. This is an open-access work distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction is permitted, provided that the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. The license allows for commercial use. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.