Item #1388 [MAYAKOVSKY ON AMERICA. RODCHENKO DESIGN] Moe otkrytie Ameriki [i.e. My Discovery of America]. V. Mayakovsky.
[MAYAKOVSKY ON AMERICA. RODCHENKO DESIGN] Moe otkrytie Ameriki [i.e. My Discovery of America]
[MAYAKOVSKY ON AMERICA. RODCHENKO DESIGN] Moe otkrytie Ameriki [i.e. My Discovery of America]

[MAYAKOVSKY ON AMERICA. RODCHENKO DESIGN] Moe otkrytie Ameriki [i.e. My Discovery of America]

Moscow: GIZ, 1926. Item #1388

142, [2] pp.: ill. 18.6x14.2 cm. Original wrappers designed by Alexander Rodchenko. Loss of pieces of the spine, very light damp stains on the upper part throughout. Otherwise in a good condition.

First edition. 1 of 3,000 copies. This collaboration between Mayakovsky and Alexander Rodchenko exemplifies the classic of Constructivist design.
In the mid-1920s, as Mayakovsky’s turbulent relationship with Lilya Brik (1891-1978) reached an impasse, the poet decided to refresh both his personal and artistic life. Vladimir pinned particular hopes on a trip to the United States, a country that he simultaneously admired and disliked. Before 1925, Mayakovsky’s attempts to visit the U.S. met with little success, and only after participating in the Paris International Exhibition was he allowed to enter the States as a publicity agent.
On June 21, 1925, Mayakovsky left France on a luxury ocean liner Spain, and after 18 days of sailing the Atlantic, the poet landed in Cuba and on July 8 in Mexico, where he was greeted by the fellow Communist Diego Rivera (1886-1957).
On July 27, after being put behind bars for eight hours by U.S. authorities, Mayakovsky finally entered the United States. Already in three days, Vladimir reached his first destination, New York, where he was warmly welcomed by his close friend and the father of Russian Futurism David Burliuk (1882-1967). From there, Mayakovsky traveled to Cleveland, Detroit, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh, giving readings and joining in the workers’ struggle. Mayakovsky’s impression of the States was uneven. He fell in love with New York and Brooklyn Bridge but suffered from boredom and isolation because of his inability to speak English. Initially, Mayakovsky coped with solitude with the help of David Burliuk and their long walks in the streets of Manhattan. Later, Mayakovsky dived into a new affair with Russian émigré Elli Jones, who gave birth to his child in 1926. Mayakovsky’s distraction with America and Elli lasted for only three months. In late October, he wrote a letter to Lilya, once again confessing his feelings for her and, disappointed, aborted his trip to the United States. Mayakovsky returned to the Soviet Union in a third-class cabin and concluded his voyage with the words: “But I, from poetry’s skies, plunge into Communism, because without it I feel no love...I want the Gosplan to sweat in debate, assigning me goals a year ahead” (Domoy [i.e. Homeward],1925). Mayakovsky later admitted: “I owe it to the Broadway lampionia.”
The book contains notes from the poet’s trip to America and Mexico in 1925 that tend to show the countries from a tougher side. Rare pictures from the trips are included in the edition as well.

Copies are located in UCLA, Yale, Harvard, Johns Hopkins, Dartmouth Universities, Getty Institute, Claremont Colleges, and NYPL.

Status: On Hold
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