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What is socialist realism in the culture of the USSR

Опубликовано: 31.01.2020

The concept came into play with the submission of Gorky to the First Writers Congress in 1934, and was subsequently reflected in a joint venture charter. Initially the definition was blurred and overlooked, it spoke of ideological education in accordance with the spirit of socialism, of portraying life in a revolutionary movement forward. This direction is a revolutionary movement into the future, more acceptable to literature because it is possible to develop a plot and change the character of a hero. But the definition extended to the whole culture, including art.

Socialist realism meant the reorganization of the world in accordance with communist ideals. Its main features were:

Socialist Realism: Art or Propaganda
  • pathos,
  • life confirming the beginning nationality internationalism,
  • the continuity of society and the fate of the individual.

Socialist realism existed in 20th-century painting until the mid-1980s.

The first images of socialist realism

A striking genre example is the work of Deineka's "Stahanovists" (1937). Columns of protesters in dazzling white gowns with enthusiastic faces marched in the direction symbolically placed by Lenin, rising above everyone in the background. A plaque in the spirit of apotheosis provides an understanding of the style that Soviet art has monopolized over the next nearly four decades. Similar compositional solutions were used in the huge collective panel (leader V. Efanov) "Noble People of the Soviet Country": the same columns of protesters in white foreground, children on the shoulders of working heroes and elders in national attire.

Artist community

The state was a major buyer and consumer of new art. Culture was a means of agitation and propaganda. The realities of the time forced artists, showing socialist realism in painting, to create what the state needed. And that had to do with the subject and the way it was presented, the form. The order was not necessarily direct, the masters were creating it themselves, but there was a certain authority that handled questions about the presence of the painting in the exhibition, about fostering creativity or censoring it. Often the role of such authority has been assumed by critics. And although certain norms and canons did not exist in Soviet painting of socialist realism, the reviewers perfectly observed and conveyed ideological demands from the highest echelons of power. They created a trial for the artists and condemned them. The tone of criticism could be insensitive, sneering, scolding and criminal.

The foundations of the system of government were laid at the dawn of Soviet rule, and the supplier was the Association of Artists of Revolutionary Russia. Her responsibilities included executing the social orders of state bodies. But at that time, other communities existed and competed among themselves, reflecting different directions. The winner of this competition was the AHRR. Its aesthetics most closely match the aspirations of power and the tastes of the masses. The plots of the Association members illustrated and recorded what happened in life, it was clear to everyone. Such aesthetics formed the basis of Soviet pictorial socialist realism after the violent dissolution of all other societies by the early 1930s.

Genres of picturesque socialist realism

There was a rigid hierarchy of genre in the socialist realist painting of the USSR. There was a particular theme at the forefront, with precise accents, based on modernity. If the painting had a historical background, the plot seemed to promise beauty today, showing a revolutionary development, as proclaimed in the definition of socialist realism. Often conflicts of opposing parties are evident in such acts, but those on whose side the truth was at first glance obvious. This is perfectly expressed on the canvas "On the Old Ural Drive." Johanson has placed the worker in an air of light, and the owner's character is in the shade, and the outside is uncomfortable. In the "Communist Inquiry", it is unlikely that the White Guard's face will be in the shade, and the officer's fat cross-neck is disgusting.

Historical objects

The thematic canvases with revolutionary content resonated with history. Many of them arose after their victory over Germany. The genres were close to the ones mentioned above and filled with theatricality, apotheosis. This is clearly seen in A. Bubnov in Morning in the Kulik Field. Here the soldiers froze in anticipation of a decisive battle.

Portrait as Enlightenment

Socialist Realism: Art or Propaganda

Portraits have become a technique of celebrating extraordinary personalities who have earned the right to be captured by their activities. He was also a source of enlightenment. Characters are often represented in the work process: in the office or in the laboratory, for operations, such as Yudin, or during the creative process, such as Mukhin M. Nester. In the last decades of the 19th century. he painted temples and created many paintings about holy Russia. Under the Soviets, turning to another genre, he became the most sought after portrait painter. P. Corin studied with him, his portraits are so magnificent and magnificent that they can be compared to monuments.

Meanwhile, in the portrait, especially the female, in the texture, the environment you feel a material attack. Heavy fabrics: velvety and plush pleats, fur coats and boas, all traces of a luxury past. Such portraits are from the salons of Zerkal's actress B. Johanson, I. Mashkov - "Lady in Blue".

Artistic means of socialist realism

  • scale

Scope and scope are accepted in mass scenes and landscapes. Not the rapid verticality of the lines or the dynamics of the diagonal, but the static, horizontally oriented space personified the vastness of Russia. This can be seen with F. Shurpin in "Morning of our Homeland," though here the landscape panorama only serves as the backdrop for a large figure of a leader. Stalin's presence is felt on other canvases, even where he is not.

  • apotheosis

Apothecary works were written not only on the basis of historical or thematic lines, but also on the basis of ordinary life. For example, authors S. Gerasimov and A. Plastov portrayed moments of rural triumph on the canvases of the "collective farm holiday" of 1937.

  • amplification
Socialist Realism: Art or Propaganda

At that time, giant constructions, industrial themes in which hyperbolism was present, were often presented. All the main features of painting socialist realism are in the pictures:

  • giantism,
  • pathos of volume and scale.

Although it does not have a direct formulation, it is evident in the theme, in the writing mode itself, the canvas gets thicker and heavier. Former valet diamonds have especially proven themselves in the writing of industrial landscapes. These are Lentul's motives for smashing the oil refinery in a row about Kerch workers. The material characteristic of this mode of writing has come to us well.

  • monuments

Monumentalism is present in everything, even in the dead. The names themselves carry a touch of epic. Mashkov calls his work: "Soviet Bread," "Moscow Snow." P. Konchalovsky, also of diamonds, wrote in 1941 "Alexey Tolstoy visiting the artist." On the table, we see not only plenty, but huge pieces of ham, fish, whole chicken, vegetables, glasses of various sizes for drinking. Monumentalism is characteristic of everything, everything that is difficult and big is accepted. So Deineka portrays athletes as strong and full-blooded. A. Samokhvalov, in his cycle on metro structures, writes portrait but beautiful female figures. They embody creation, omnipotence, power.

  • moderation

Fine art gets heavier, denser, denser, but that density has a measure. And such moderation was also a mandatory feature. It did not overly penetrate its own style or style of writing, although smoothness was not welcome. The stain was to be shown, so it was immediately clear that the master was working hard. The use of different techniques was considered mediation, which prevented the artist from being honest.

  • lyricism

Different writing and approach styles were used for different subjects. The lyrical theme was accentuated by achromatic impressionism. This is visible with Yu. Pimenov in the "New Quarters" cycle or in earlier "New Moscow". Even in pretentious canvases, notes of a rainy summer morning or the sound of rain, they radiate warmth and humanity. These include "Joseph Stalin and Klement Vorosilov in the Kremlin" by Gerasimov.

  • Futuristic vector

The futuristic orientation is traced back to the works of the Soviet period - a focus on the future result of revolutionary reconstruction. The inevitability of the victory of socialism is manifested by the signs of an already forthcoming future in today's life. There is a unique phenomenon in which the present is already the future. The historic peak was reached, and then the future did not follow. And the heroes of Deineka's painting are not only frantic, they are like gods who do not look at you, but in eternity, which is already with us.

The heights of socialist realism reach the end of the 1930s, where the obligatory hero Stalin is, you can list various authors here. Artists of the genre Efanov and V. Svarog have several canvases of that time. The tangles on them are like biblical manifestations of miracles. During this period, socialist realism became a totalitarian utopia. It seems to freeze over time, becoming academically monumental.

An alternate picture of the Soviet period

Socialist Realism: Art or Propaganda

All other directions are forgotten. Although artists had niches where they could create, they were invisible. In 1935, old-school experts joined the Monumental Painting Workshop, but such associations were short-lived.

The paradox of that time is that totalitarian art proclaims humanity, the care of the person, but in the pathos of the avant-garde, the over-enthusiasm for the revolutionary construction of the new world, there is no place for the individual. And the alternative creativity "under the cabinet" reflects individuality, humanity.

Features of late genre history

Later, in the 1950s, when Stalin, the personifying style of totalitarianism, was no longer there, socialist realism would attempt to adopt the qualities of humanity. Menacing the trend were the canvases of artist A. Plastov. His story of the senseless death of a shepherd in the movie "Fascist Passed" in 1942 is particularly penetrating. One can clearly see how the state intonation changes into a family one in F. Reshetnikov.

It depicts ordinary people, moments from private life, which are - "Two Again" and "Arrived for the Holidays". Pimenov answers this topic. Very sentimental and instructive lactional "Letter from the Front". It can be described as a socialist realist philistine style.

This period, like the swan song of socialist realism in painting, still lasts until the collapse of the USSR, but it will be the end of its possibilities. Over the years of defrosting, new styles and other masters will emerge. Underground creations will force a different view of the world of Soviet art.

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