Alexandra Exter

(1882 - 1949)


Ivan Aksenev

Неуважительныя основания

Weak foundations

Moscow: Tsentrifuga, 1916

356 x 266 mm. 48 pages

Edition: 200. Copy nr.110






Invalid (or weak) foundations is, according to Markov, one of the few genuinely avant-garde works published by Centrifuge. Centrifuge was a group of Russian futurists, founded at the end of 1913 when other futurist groups such as Mezzanine of poetry were being disbanded. In 1915 Ivan Aksenev joined the group and quickly became one of its central figures. Aksenev, the author of the only book in Russian about Picasso in this period, was deeply influenced by French cubism. The two last poems of Invalid foundations describe the Eiffel tower in Paris and might well have taken their inspiration from Robert Deleaunay’s famous paintings. Alexandra Exter, who provided two etchings for the book, was at that time working on an album under the title Colour rhythms in which she was experimenting with forms and rhythm in colours. In the two black and white etchings she shows this concern for form and contrasts. When comparing the sunrays over the architectural forms in the above etching, with the design that Lissitzky did for the cover of The spent sun (see nr. 26), one can appreciate the more mature cubist handling of rhythm and harmony that Exter was able to achieve.  


Tarasenkov 1966, p. 10

Markov 1969, p. 271

Compton 1978, p. 43

Moscow, 1991, p.134

Getty 1997, nr. 5

St. Petersburg 2001, pp. 45-46

MOMA 2002, nr. 119

Chauvelin 2003, p. 363

Hellyer 2006, nr. 3

Khachaturov 2009, p. 174