Natalia Goncharova will be celebrated from today in the UK’s first ever retrospective of the Russian avant-garde artist.
The show at Tate Modern will be a sweeping survey of the pioneering and radical figure, praised during her lifetime as a leading modernist artist. Throughout her varied career, she challenged the limits of artistic, social and gender conventions, from parading through the streets of Moscow displaying futurist body art and scandalising newspapers of the day, to creating internationally acclaimed designs for fashion and the theatre.
Goncharova’s artistic output traces, influences and transcends the art movements of the 20th century. Born in 1881, she was inspired by the traditional customs and cultures of her native Central Russia – inspirations that pervade her life’s work.
By the age of 32, she had already established herself as a leader of the Moscow avant-garde and was the subject of the first monographic exhibition ever staged by a Russian modernist artist. Arriving in Paris in 1914 at the invitation of Sergei Diaghilev, Goncharova was feted for her vibrant costume and set designs for the Ballets Russes.
The exhibition gathers together over 160 international loans which rarely travel, including from Russia’s State Tretyakov Gallery which houses the largest collection of Goncharova works in the world. At the heart of the show will be a room evoking Goncharova’s remarkable 1913 retrospective that was held at the Mikhailova Art Salon in Moscow, which originally featured some 800 works. We can't wait.
Natalia Goncharova at Tate Modern in London launches today, Thursday 6 June, and runs until 8 September 2019.