St. Petersburg, 1919.  pp.,  pp. (separately). 25,7x20,5 cm. Original cloth binding. Block is a bit shaky, otherwise very good.
Manuscript book created by one of the legends of Soviet constructivism Yakov Chernikhov (1889-1951). The book under the same title has never been published.
An incredible insight into the method of the master.
Standing somewhat aside from the 1920s avant-garde circles, Chernikhov investigated the constructive principles of architecture and developed his own unique style characterized by the amalgam of different movements, namely suprematism, cubism, and expressionism. This kind of architectural eclecticism and an idea of a new world proposed by the architecture were unsurprisingly met with considerable resistance from the authorities.
The book consists of hundreds of individual sketches and drafts of different figures and volumes. Some of them are colored, but the majority are not. Pen as well as pencil are used, and by looking at the variants of the same figures on the page, one could really understand how the work process worked for Chernikhov.
Most of the pages are signed by Chernikhov at the bottom. Twelve pages of drawings are not bound, but belong with a book.
This book fits into a series of works on a special subject developed by Chernikhov himself, which he called ‘‘the art of graphic representation’’. Under the old-fashioned title Chernikhov meant something very modern. It is about graphic, spatial, and abstract compositions, and seeks to encourage students to use lines, planes, and solids to express beauty and movement without depicting anything known or recognizable, experimenting with all the boundless possibilities open to them. Materials from this sketchbook together with others were used in Iskusstvo nachertania [i.e. The Art of Graphic Representation] published in 1927.
A series of similar notebooks, portfolios and sketches were sold by Bonhams in two large lots for 425000 USD and 173000 USD in 2014.