Vladimir Baranov-Rossine (1888-1944)
Date of Birth: January 1, 1888
Date of Death: 1944
Place of Birth: Kherson, Ukraine
Occupation: Painter, Sculptor, Inventor
Education: School of the Society for the Furthering of the Arts; Imperial Academy of Arts, Saint Petersburg
“La route au village,” 1908-12
“La Cousine,” 1910
“Bouteille de vin sur une chaise,” 1913
“Il Violoncellista,” 1918-20
“Le Pont Ares,” 1927
“Arcachon, maison,” 1927
“Hommage a Lindbergh,” 1927-28
“The Housekeeper,” 1930
Vladimir Baranov-Rossine was a Franco-Russian artist and inventor, best remembered as one of the key figures in the Cubo-Futurist movement.
Vladimir Davidovich Baranoff-Rossine was born in January, 1888, in Kherson. He came from a middle-class family in Saint Petersburg that was both cultured and liberal. So, his inclination towards the arts was fostered at a young age. He studied art from proper art schools, finishing studies at Imperial Academy of Arts.
Rossine began exhibiting with the short-lived Zveno group in 1907. It was a movement formed by brothers David and Vladimir Burliuk, along with Alexander Bogomazov and Aleksandra Ekster, advocating a synthesis of various art forms. It was this ideal of amalgamating the sensory experiences of music, sculpture, painting, and light that proved most enduring in his creative practice.
Life and Work in Paris
The artist traveled to Paris in 1910 to experience being in the heart and center of the European avant-garde community. He began working under the pseudonym of Daniel Rossine. He established an atelier in the artists’ colony of La Ruche where he came into contact with a host of immigrant painters from the Russian Empire such as Alexander Archipenko, Marc Chagall, Chaim Soutine and Ossip Zadkine. During this period, he started experimenting with the Cubist aesthetic, exhibiting his compositions annually at the Salon des Independants where, in 1913, his work “Symphony No. 2” was first shown. The polychrome sculpture was particularly divisive, garnering considerable negative press from art critics, but it brought his work to the attention of Guillaume Apollinaire, who introduced him to the Baronne d’Oettingen and Serge Férat, both of whom would become his enthusiastic patrons and advocates of his work.
In 1915, Rossine traveled to Scandinavia to mount a solo exhibition in Oslo and Stockholm using an optophonic piano, having amended the design to resemble the movement of a Moebius ribbon. After returning to Russia in 1917 to participate in the Artistic Revolution, he founded the Art Workshop in what was once the St. Petersburg Academy, in 1918. Having ensured a modicum of financial stability, he married for the first time, though the union was brief. His young wife died in childbirth in 1920, leaving him with a son, Eugene. In 1923, he married Pauline Cemionovna Boukour.
In 1924, the artist made a breakthrough in his chromatic research, creating an optophonic piano that combined color, sound and shape through the projection of a series of patterned plastic discs. The sheer novelty of the machine led to a series of performances in Moscow, at the Bolshoi and the Meyerhold theaters. He returned to Paris soon after to establish the first optophonic academy, continuing in his audiovisual experiments despite public skepticism.
Later Life, Death and Legacy
The years between 1939 and 1941 were particularly productive for Rossine, who collaborated with Robert Delaunay on a military art project while simultaneously developing a machine to determine the quality of precious jewels and another to sterilize and dispense aerated drinks, called the Multiperco.
At some point in 1942 or 1943, the artist was seized and expatriated to a German concentration camp along with his family, where he died the following year.
Rossine’s stylistic versatility in painting with its complex coordination of visual space and inventive genius were both amazing. He possessed a rare genius and developed a modern medium of art that used movement, light, and music simultaneously through the creation of his optophonic piano.
1888 - Born in Kherson, Ukraine
1902 - Studies at the School of the Society for the Furthering of the Arts in Saint Petersburg as well as the Odessa Art School
1903 - Enrolls at the Imperial Academy of Beaux-Arts in Saint Petersburg
1910 - Lives in La Ruche with Archipenko, Delaunay-Terk, Altman, and others
1922 - Teaches at the Higher Artistic-Technical Workshops in Moscow
1927 - Establishes the first optophonic academy in France
1944 - Disappears during World War II, presumed dead
1970 - Jean Chauvelin Gallery, Paris, France
1972 - National Modern Art Museum, Paris, France
1983 - Berlin Brusberg Gallery, Berlin, Germany
1986 - National Modern Art Museum, Paris, France
1988 - Roy Anderson & Linda Gould Gallery, New York, USA
1992 - Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands
2002 - Russian Museum, Saint Petersburg, Russia
2003 - Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, Madrid, Spain
2004 - Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C., USA
2006 - Galerie Helene Lamarque, Paris, France
2009 - Hamburger Kunsthalle, Hamburg, Germany
MUSEUMS / COLLECTIONS
Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington D.C., USA
Moscow Museum of Modern Art, Moscow, Russia,
Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, Madrid, Spain
BOOKS / PUBLICATIONS
“Vladimir Baranoff-Rossine” by Jean Leymarie
“After the Rite: Stravinsky’s Path to Neoclassicism” by Maureen A. Carr
“Painting Revolution: Kandinsky, Malevich and the Russian Avant-Garde” by John Bowitt
“Movement, Manifesto, Melee: The Modernist Group, 1910-1914” by Milton A. Cohen