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Natalia Goncharova

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Natalia Sergeevna Goncharova (July 3, 1881 – October 17, 1962) Russian, active France

Natalia Goncharova was a Russian avant-garde artist, working in painting, costume design, writing, illustration, and set design. She attended school at the Moscow Institute of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture studying sculpture in 1901. In her early work, she was influenced by Impressionism, Fauvism, and Russian folk sculpture. By 1903, she began exhibiting in major exhibitions. In 1909 she withdrew from the institute due to being denied the right to get her diploma upon completion for being a woman and opped to take classes at Illia Mashkov and Alexander Mikhailovsky’s studios to be treated as a male equivalent. She became a founding member of the Jack of Diamonds (1909–1911) and Donkey’s Tail (1912–1913), both were radical independent exhibiting groups the Jack of Diamonds became the first in Moscow. She was also an active member of Der Blaue Reiter (1912), a German art movement. By 1912 her approach adopted Cubo-Futurist and Rayist. Around 1913, she began collaborating with Diaghilev and his Ballets Russes. In the 1920s and 1930s, she often exhibited her partner Larionov, in Europe, the United States, and Japan. And though she never gave up painting, she spent most of her energy towards book illustration and set design, including costumes, settings, decorations for modern and classical international ballets.

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