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The Politics of Pairing Gender Identity and Artistic Profession in Moscow’s Constructivist Circle

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The Politics of Pairing Gender Identity and Artistic Profession in Moscow’s Constructivist Circle

Penev, Gabriella (2019) The Politics of Pairing Gender Identity and Artistic Profession in Moscow’s Constructivist Circle. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

Through a comparative analysis of two artists working in Moscow's Constructivist movement in the early 1920's this paper assesses how the framework of gender shapes the ways in which they have been portrayed by scholars. By utilizing primary art works, personal writings, and scholarly materials this work considers how gender identity is woven in and out of Liubov Popova and Aleksandr Rodchenko's professional lives to construct current historical narratives about them. In tandem, by breaking down the decades-long cultivation and reification of the term 'woman artist' into three historical moments, this research seeks to determine whether it is a fitting primary descriptor of an artist working at the fore of one of the most experimental, and multi-disciplinary artistic movements in the early 20th century. My research suggests a redistributive lens is needed to include other aspects of identity in the categorical linguistic framing of Popova, so as to allow for alternative, yet equally relevant pairings, such as between her profession and her shifting class status. In conclusion this work hopes to reveal how both Popova and Rodchenko adhered to, and occasionally circumvented traditional class and gender specific forms of art practice through their Constructivist projects. Their navigations can be read as a subtle effort to destabilize definitions of high and low art, as well as the dichotomous relationship between feminine and masculine domains of art practice.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > History
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Penev, Gabriella
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:M.A.
Program:History
Date:March 2019
Thesis Supervisor(s):Rowley, Alison
ID Code:985112
Deposited By: GABRIELLA PENEV
Deposited On:17 Jun 2019 16:13
Last Modified:17 Jun 2019 16:13
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