What is futurism in silver age literature? Representatives of futurism

What is futurism? Such a question is asked by all who set about studying the styles and trends of world art. In this article we will analyze in detail how futurism was in Russia, we will tell about its representatives and features.

The birth of futurism

futurism what is

In order to understand what futurism is, examine where it came from. Its founder and author of the term is considered the Italian poet, whose name was Filippo Marinetti. He lived at the turn of the XIX and XX centuries. His most famous work is the poem Red Sugar. Already this name itself implied a discrimination of the present and the past and the erection of the future into a cult.

In 1909 a manifesto of futurism was published in the newspaper Figaro, the author of which was Marinetti. The text was addressed to beginners and talented Italian artists.The author declared the telegraph style and the goal to fulfill his task for a maximum of 10 years, until a new generation arrived with its own rules.

Also the founders of this area of ​​art are Giacomo Balla, Francesco Balilla Pratella, Carlo Carr, Luigi Rusollo, Umberto Boccioni, Gino Severini. They were the first to formulate what futurism is. In 1912, the first exhibition of futurist artists opened in Paris.

Features of the art direction

futurism poems

Among the features of futurism, its founders singled out a categorical rejection of traditional spelling and grammar. Poets experimented a lot with word creation, artists often painted moving objects (cars, airplanes, trains). Even the special term “airbrush painting” has appeared.

Most of the representatives of futurism were delighted with the novelties of technical progress. For example, a motorcycle declared more perfect work of art than the work of Michelangelo.

Another feature of futurism is chanting revolutions and wars as one of the most effective ways of rejuvenating the world. Many modern researchers consider futurism as a kind of symbiosis of Nietzscheanism and the manifesto of the Communist Party.

Futurism in art

Initially, futurism appeared in the visual arts. In painting, he pushed from several directions. This is Fauvism, from there futurism drew on unexpected color schemes, as well as cubism, from which it took on bold artistic forms.

The main artistic principles of futurism are movement, speed, energy. On canvases, artists sought to achieve this in various ways. Their works are characterized by very energetic compositions, in which the figures are divided into many small fragments intersecting by sharp corners. At the same time zigzags, cones and flickering forms prevail. The effect of motion is often achieved by overlaying successive phases on the same image. This technique is called the "principle of simultaneity."

Futurism in Russia

Russian futurism

What is futurism, in Russia, the Burlyuk brothers were the first to know. One of them - David - became the founder of a colony of futurists called "Gilea", which in a short time included many bright personalities. For example, Vladimir Mayakovskaya, Velimir Khlebnikov, Benedict Livshits, Alexey Kruchenykh, Elena Guro.

They released their first manifesto, dubbed "The slap in the face of public taste." In it, representatives of futurism called for throwing Pushkin, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky and all the other classics from the steamship of modernity. True, in the end, somewhat softening their call, they note that those who will not forget their first love will not know the last.

Three true geniuses came out of Russian futurism - Mayakovsky, Pasternak and Khlebnikov. In this case, the fate of the majority of representatives of this field of art was tragic. Some were shot, others died in exile. Many were doomed to oblivion as soon as their fame passed.

Traits of the Russian direction

futurism representatives

In Russia, the futurism style inherited most of the main features of this literary movement that existed in Europe. But at the same time he had his own unique features.

Representatives of the national school of futurism have always been distinguished by anarchic and rebellious worldview, they sought to express the mass sentiments of the crowd. At the same time, cultural traditions were strongly denied, trying to create art directed into the future.

The futurists in Russia spoke out categorically against the established norms of literary speech.They experimented in the field of rhythm, rhyme, made posters and slogans a part of their art, especially Mayakovsky. Poets were in constant search for the liberated word, carrying out experiments to create their own, so-called "abstruse" language.


Futurism in the Silver Age became popular and famous in Russia. One of the brightest representatives was Igor Severyanin, who even published in 1911 a collection of his poems called Prologue. Ego-Futurism.

By that time, quite well known were the followers of the Burliuk brothers. Their collection "Zadok judges 1" was released in 1910. In general, Russian futurism poems played a big role. Therefore, the main authors of the manifesto "A slap in the face to the public taste" became poets. They even formulated four basic rules for poets: the need to expand the poetic dictionary with the help of new words, to hate the language that existed before them, to give up glory, to make the word "we" as the key word.

The heyday of futurism

features of futurism

In Russia, the heyday of literary futurism fell just in the Silver Age.It was then that the society of "Gilea", founded by the Burliuk brothers, achieved the greatest popularity. But the main thing is that they were not the only ones.

Many followers were found by Igor Severyanin, who promoted ego-futurism. The main differences of this direction consisted in the mass use of foreign words, the refinement of sensations and ostentatious self-love, selfishness. Among the followers of the Northerner are Sergey Alymov, Vasilisk Gnedov, Vadim Bayan, Georgiy Ivanov, Vadim Shershenevich. Mostly ego-futurists were based in Petersburg.

In Moscow, the influential society "Centrifuge" stood out, which consisted of Boris Pasternak, Sergey Bobrov, Nikolay Aseev. Their futuristic groups existed in Kharkov, Kiev, Baku, Odessa.

Sunset era "storms and onslaught"

Representatives of futurism began to experience a certain crisis already at the end of 1914, when the period of "storm and onslaught" ended. As Sofia Starkin noted in her memoirs about Velimir Khlebnikov, the futurists in Russia achieved quick and noisy success, gained scandalous fame, which they wanted, released several dozen poetic collections, organized several original theatrical productions, and therefore quickly wilted.As if they felt that their historical mission has already been accomplished.

Moreover, in 1913-1914 several famous poets of this trend died. These are Nadezhda Lvova, Vasily Komarovsky, Bogdan Gordeyev, Ivan Ignatiev.

After the victory of the Bolsheviks in the October Revolution, Futurism finally began to disappear. Some representatives of this direction entered the new literary organization “LEF”, whose name was decoded as “The Left Front of Art”. It broke up in the late 1920s. Some representatives of futurism, whose poems were famous in Russia, emigrated. These include David Burliuk, Igor Severyanin, Alexander Exter. Alexander Bogomaz and Velimir Khlebnikov died. Boris Pasternak and Nikolai Aseev developed their own style, far from futurism.

David Burliuk

silver age futurism

If you talk about specific representatives of futurism in Russia, then begin, first of all, from David Burliuk. He is considered the founder of this trend in our country.

Burliuk was born in 1882 in the Kharkov province. In childhood, he lost his eyes when playing with his brother with a toy gun. He studied at art schools in Odessa and Kazan, then mastered painting abroad. In 1907 he returned to Russia, soon became acquainted with Vladimir Mayakovsky.Together they became one of the most prominent representatives of the national futurism.

During the First World War was not subject to appeal due to lack of eyes. In 1918, he almost died during the pogroms that the anarchists staged in Moscow. After that he left for Ufa. Gradually he reached Vladivostok, from where he emigrated to Japan. He wrote about three hundred paintings on Japanese motifs, the money from their sale was enough to settle in America.

He visited the Soviet Union twice, in 1956 and 1965, he tried to publish his works at home, but to no avail. In 1967 he died in the town of Hampton Base in the state of New York.

Igor Severyanin

literary futurism

The real name of this poet is Igor Lotarev. He was born in 1887 in St. Petersburg. It began to be printed regularly in 1904. His first famous collection of poems entitled "The Loud Boiling Cup" was printed in 1913.

Northerner is becoming one of the most famous futurists. Often speaks to a large audience. Spends several joint poetic evenings with Vladimir Mayakovsky.

Receives the unofficial title of King of Poets at the famous performance in the Great Audience of the Polytechnic Museum.

In 1918, he left Petrograd for Estonia. Soon it turns out to be forced emigration, when, according to the conditions of the Brest Peace, Estonia departs to Germany. He never returned to Russia.

Away from his homeland, he longs for much, writes many lyrical, nostalgic poems, which are not at all like his early futuristic experiments. In the early 1940s he began to get sick regularly. In World War II, Northerners wanted to evacuate to the rear, but could not do it. Igor was already feeling very bad by that time.

In October 1941 he was transported to Tallinn, where he died two months later from a heart attack.

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