Lot 405:
3 000 4 000

GUSTAV KLUTSIS (1895-1938) Three unique photomontages

1) Politburo or Secretariat. 9x12,7 cm (irregular shape), executed circa 1935. Gelatin silver print. Stamp, signed (lower right). Counter-signed by artist’s son on reverse. Unique collage maquette for a photograph or poster (not executed). Exhibited: Essen, Germany, Glaube Hoffnung Anpassing, Museum Folkwang, 1995, p. 79 (illustrated). Valencia, Spain, Utopia, ilusion y adaptation,Valencia International Museum of Art, 1996, p. 103 (illustrated). 2) The Party with the Backing of the Masses. 17,8x12,7 cm, executed in 1933. Gelatin silver print. Stamp signed and dated ‘1933’ (lower right). Counter-signed by artist’s son on reverse. Unique collage maquette for a photograph or poster (final version of the montage, unexecuted). Exhibited: Essen, Germany, Glaube Hoffnung Anpassing, Museum Folkwang, 1995, p. 79 (illustrated). Valencia, Spain, Utopia, ilusion y adaptation,Valencia International Museum of Art, 1996, p. 103 (illustrated). 3) Politburo or Secretariat (‘Stalin towers over the assembly in the photo as he did in life’). 10x15 cm, executed circa 1935. Gelatin silver print. Counter-signed by artist’s son on reverse. Unique altered photograph (study for photograph or poster, not executed). Provenance: Son of the artist. Purchased from the above by Jack Banning, Paris, late 1970s. Ubu gallery, New York, ca 1980. Ida Genstein estate. *Published in error as “1938” in catalogs, according to Professor Typitsyn who has verified the authenticity of the worksin conversation. Stalin is the largest figure, as he is the most important character in the photograph. In the front row: Anastas Mikoian, Mikhail Kalinin, Vyacheslav Molotov, Lazar Kaganovich, Kliment Voroshilov, and SergoOrdzhonikidze. In the back row: Stanislav Kosior, Vlas Chubar, Mikhail Tomsky, Pavel Postyshev, Grigori Petrovskii,Andrei Zhdanov, Robert Eikhe, and Nikolai Yezhov.The cut-out figure is Jānis Rudzutaks, a Bolshevik revolutionary and Soviet politician who in 1937 was expelled from theCentral Committee. After torture, confession of being a spy, and then a retraction of this confession, Rudzutaks was givendeath penalty.Figures who fell from grace under Stalin were deleted from visual records.
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