Chepik Tatyana et al., Olga Rozanova, 1886–1918, exh. cat., Helsinki, Helsingin Kaupungin Taidemuseo, 1992→
Gurianova Nina, Olga Rozanova and the Culture of the Russian Avant-Garde 1910-1918, Amsterdam / Abingdon, G+B Arts International / Marston, 1999→
Bowlt John, Drutt Matthew (ed.), Amazons of the Avant-Garde: Alexandra Exter, Natalia Goncharova, Liubov Popova, Olga Rozanova, Varvara Stepanova and Nadezhda Udaltsova, exh. cat., Deutsche Guggenheim Berlin ; Royal Academy of Art, London ; Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice ; Guggenheim Museum Bilbao ; Solomon R. Guggenheim, New York ; New York, Guggenheim Museum (1999–2001), New York, Guggenheim Museum, 2000
Amazons of the Avant-Garde: Alexandra Exter, Natalia Goncharova, Liubov Popova, Olga Rozanova, Varvara Stepanova and Nadezhda Udaltsova, Deutsche Guggenheim Berlin ; Royal Academy of Art, London ; Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice ; Guggenheim Museum Bilbao ; Solomon R. Guggenheim, New York ; New York, Guggenheim Museum, 1999–2001
After studying at the Bolshakov Art School in Moscow, Olga Rozanova attended the classes of the Symbolist landscape painter Konstantin Yuon and the Stroganov School of Applied Art. She continued her studies at the Elizaveta Zwantseva School in 1911. There she met Nikolai Kulbin, Mikhail Matyushin, and Elena Guro and took part in the activities of their Futurist group, Union of the Youth. From 1911 to 1918, she participated in major avant-garde exhibitions, among which the Futurist exhibitions Tramway V and 0,10, as well as the exhibitions of the Jack of Diamonds group. It was during this period of experimentation that she formulated her theoretical principles in a famous article, “The Bases of the New Creation and the Reasons Why It Is Misunderstood” (1913).
In 1912 she began a friendship with the Futurist poets David Burliuk, Vladimir Mayakovsky, and Aleksei Kruchenykh, whom she married in 1916. It was mainly with him and the poet Velimir Khlebnikov that she contributed to the creation of the Futurist “almanacs”, books that combined pictures and zaum (“transreason”) poetry, with a will to become emancipated from both pictorial and linguistic norms. In 1916 she joined Supremus, the group founded by Kazimir Malevich, who considered her to be his best pupil and whose own artistic evolution owed a lot to her. From then on, she devoted herself to painting abstract compositions.
Her production became more and more minimalistic as from 1917, with original, pared-down works. Like most avant-gardists, she adopted the ideals of the October Revolution and in this respect took an active part in the promotion and teaching of applied arts, particularly by creating art and industrial workshops. A major posthumous exhibition of over 250 of her works was held in Moscow in 1918 after she prematurely died from diphtheria.
Olga Vladimirovna Rozanova, Suprematist Design (Decorative Motif), 1916, brush and black ink and watercolor over graphite on cream wove paper, 25.2 x 16.8 cm, 9 15/16 x 6 5/8 in.
Olga Vladimirovna Rozanova, Battle, from the portfolio Voina (War), 1915-1916, linocut in black ink, 30.8 x 41.1 cm, 12 1/8 x 16 3/16 in.
Olga Vladimirovna Rozanova, To the Death, from the portfolio Voina (War), 1915-1916, linocut in green ink, 39.2 x 32.4 cm, 15 7/16 x 12 3/4 in.
Olga Vladimirovna Rozanova, Destruction of the City, from the portfolio Voina (War), 1915-1916, linocut in black ink, 41.1 x 32.1 cm, 16 3/16 x 12 5/8 in.
Olga Vladimirovna Rozanova, Excerpt from a Newspaper Bulletin: “During the Execution…”, from the portfolio Voina (War), linocut in black ink, 40.5 x 31.8 cm, 15 15/16 x 12 1/2 in.