The Natalia Goncharova show at the Tate is only the second retrospective of her work ever outside of Russia and it is amazing. It reminded me a little bit of the Sonia Delauny at the Thyseen of a few years back in that both are women from Eastern Europe married to artists whose art included not only painting but also designing textiles, wall-paper, costumes, theatre sets etc. Goncharova´s work is more impressive even then Delauny´s. I learned about ‘Everythingism´and ‘Rayonism’. She was a key figure in Futurism in pre-Soviet Russia and Cubism later in Paris, and she collaborated with Diaghilev, Mayakovsky, Stravinsky, Rimsky-Korsakov and a whole host of key figures across the arts in the early part of the twentieth century. Plus the range and then the quality of the works themselves. It´s something to see. As a sidenote, Pushkin was married to her aunt and namesake, Natalia Goncharova.
My favourite of the recent art exhibitions I’ve seen, the one where I feel I learned the most. One forgets that Picasso was already a figure in Belle Epoque Paris. He painted the same people as Lautrec (La Goulou, Jane Avril), was obsessed by the same themes and milieus (Bohemianism, the Underworld, Brothrels, The Circus). Picasso also undertook advertising in this period. Seeing the work side by side on the same themes, with Picasso painting in a style that seems a combination of the recent Post-Impressionism mixed in with the emerging style seen recently in the Portrait in Vienna style at the National Gallery (Klimt, Schiele, Kokoschka), was a revelation. Brilliant exhibition, which will surely travel and which I urge you to see if you get the opportunity.