Aleksandra Exter (Ekster) was born in 1882, in Belostok, Russia. Exter graduates from Kiev Art School in 1906. Among her fellow students are Alexander Archipenko, Aristarkh Lentulov, and Aleksandr Bogomazov. After her marriage she moves to Paris where she meets Picasso and Braque. Upon her return to Russia she shows her work in Kiev and in St. Petersburg. She also organizes “Zveno” – an exhibition related to Impressionism with her fellow artists David Burlyuk, Mikhail Larionov, and Natalya Goncharova. Gradually her style evolves from Cubism to Cubo-Futurism. Later she moves to abstract geometrical forms (still life) and semi-abstract landscapes (1915). Unlike other Futurists she does not try to portray movement in space, instead she experiments with dynamic rhythm and color balance.
As of 1916, Exter is completely immersed in nonobjective art—plane surfaces and depth, balance and movement, color and light as can be seen in her works Movement of Planes (1917–1918) and Construction (1922–1923). Her most prolific period is from the mid-1910s to the beginning of the 1920s. At the same time she excels in stage design. In Moscow she works with Aleksandr Tairov for the Kamerny Theatre. Her set of designs for the theater, among them Oscar Wilde’s Salomé (1917), is a great success. In 1924 Exter moves to Paris. She works with Yakov Protazanov and later helps to set up the Soviet pavilion at the Exposition Internationale des Arts Décoratifs et Industriels Modernes. Exter dies in France in 1949.
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