The Karakalpakstan State Museum of Art in Nukus, Uzbekistan — also known simply as the Nukus Museum—holds one of the largest collections of Russian avant-garde art in the world, second only to The Russian State Museum in St. Petersburg. This collection would not exist without the titanic efforts of its founder, who collected these artworks himself piece-by-piece, traveling thousands of kilometers back and forth from Moscow to the Uzbek desert to save an art movement.
The Russian Avant-Garde was obscured by the totalitarian regime of the early 20th century, banished by censorship policies, and could only persist to exist thanks to collectors such as the museums founder, who, despite the threat of political repression, risked all to safeguard these works of art. This volume showcases the museum’s impressive Russian Avant-Garde collection, which includes internationally renowned painters such as Lyubov Popova, Ivan Kudryashov and Vera Pestel. It also features work from lesser-known artists who were equally important figures of the movement, such as Pyotr Sokolov, Georgiy Echeistov and Solmon Nikritin; as well as artworks by the Amaravella, a group of Russian cosmists whose artworks explored the group’s surrealistic, creative and imaginative visions of the cosmos.