Malevich At Tate Modern

Kazimir Malevich’s seminal work ‘black square’ had as much influence on modern art today as Duchamp’s urinal, and this exhibition charts his life and journey as an artist that would eventually lead to him creating simple forms in a movement he named Suprematism.

The first third of this exhibition shows how Malevich tried to emulate the artists who had come before him, trialling Impressionism and Cubism by drawing inspiration from the likes of Picasso and Klee. But it’s clear from these works that although he was a talented painter, Malevich was not happy and was constantly experimenting to find a new way forward.

This led him to theorise that to capture the true essence of an object he must break it down into simply colour and form, with this reductive path eventually culminating in his famous black square paintings — two of them are on display in this show.

From then on we see only blocked forms and sculptures, at first titled to represent something he’s seen such as a boy with a rucksack, before transcending the representational and simply bearing titles like Suprematist composition.

We wish the exhibition ended here as the addition of works on paper and artists inspired by Malevich does lower the overall quality of the display. And Malevich also seems to lose his way with a return to figurative art a last resort after he had taken abstraction to its inevitable conclusion.

Despite the wayward final third, this is a comprehensive retrospective and for those who either struggle to grasp, or do not respect, abstract art this exhibition shows how one artist’s journey charts out the natural evolution of modern art from portraits and landscapes to a simple black square.

Malevich: Revolutionary of Russian Art is on at Tate Modern until 26 October. Tickets are £13.10 for adults, concessions available.  Also still on at Tate Modern are the bright and colourful Matisse cut-outs.

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  • Sandra Mara Carvalho de Melo

    Good Morning Friend of Londonist thank you for Tabish Khan one beauty Article . one joy know o work reality with creative of Art Modern ,a picture have one lovely all special a quality , harmony of color ,o eyes human can see in deep a harmony of space reveal each figure have your space in joint in tune with beauty linear, a life is conquest in moment in heaven ,each figure have you are place in space in pause ,each color one nature that in one decoration of accord with tom ,reveal one new .lovely and win one touch that invite for good humor and elegance for each heart that stop for see and reveal one smile a sense of well to be ,great for Kazimir Malevich one Tela wonderful , with suavity a inspiration of Picasso and touch person in order all have you are space, One beauty week for all friend and new friend grace for touch of Art.. Sandra Mara Carvalho de Melo