Item #1848 [VALENTINA KHODASEVICH] Konovalov. M. Gorky.


Petrograd: Izdanie Petrogradskogo Soveta Rabochikh i Krasnykh Deputatov, 1919. Item #1848

71 pp. 22x15,5 cm. In original illustrated wrappers. Tears and fragments of spine and covers lost, small stains occasionally, underlines, otherwise good.

First thus edition. Rare.
A good example of Gorky’s realistic stories on ordinary life of Russian workers in the 19th century. It was first published in 1897.
Cover design was produced by Valentina Khodasevich (1894-1970), his close friend. She was a Soviet painter, theater artist and Vladislav Khodasevich’s niece. She studied at Rerberg school, left for Paris but came back to Moscow in 1912. She worked at Tatlin’s studio, participated in exhibitions of Jack Of Diamonds, World of Art and other groups. She was familiar with Mayakovsky, Burliuk, Goncharova, Larionov, Radlov and others. In all, she made designs for 150 theater productions and was one of the best Leningrad theater artists of her time. In 1919, Gorky asked her to make covers and illustrations for a series of his stories.
For this work, she depicted the resolution of the story. The work is about a poor handyman Konovalov, who suffers from long binges because of melancholy. Between these periods he is a talented and cheerful man, curious for literature yet illiterate. Once, he ends up in a prison and melancholy leads him to suicide. Khodasevich portrayed not “a man of Slavic appearance with lively eyes who worked enthusiastically,” but a prisoner who had hanged himself. The cover design features cubistic tendencies in her art.

Not found in the USA.

Price: $750.00

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