*1891 in St. Petersburg, Russia
†1956 in Moscow, USSR
Alexander Rodchenko was a Russian artist, sculptor, photographer and graphic designer, who led some of the most influential and consequential artistic debates following the 1917 Russian Revolution. His formally extreme photography style, coupled with his groundbreaking monochrome paintings establish him as one of the 20th centuries most innovative artists. Rodchenko trained from 1910 through 1914 at the Kazan School of Art between 1910 before pursuing architecture at the Stroganov School in Moscow. Rodchenko worked closely with Malevich, Tatlin, and his wife, Varvara Stepanova as they each developed their own forms of non-objective art and Suprematism, before Rodchenko abandoned and condemned painting in 1921 to focus on industrial arts for the people. His industrial designs including posters, book covers, workers lounges, textiles and furniture proved extremely influential for the visual culture of daily life in the early Soviet Republic. He turned to photography in 1924, where his stark, inventive compositions upended the conventions and possibilities of photography. In his later years, Rodchenko softened his commitment to ideological issues and returned to easel painting, in works that have been considered as prefiguring Abstract Expressionism. Today, Rodchenko’s works can be found in global museums including, the State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C; and the Tel Aviv Museum of Art.