An Evening of the Book | Varvara Stepanova, 1924

Varvara Stepanova, Designs for the performance of An Evening of the Book with 
the protagonists standing in front, 1924 / Photographer: Alexander Rodchenko

Varvara Stepanova (1894 – 1958) was a Russian artist. With her husband Alexander Rodchenko, 
she was associated with the Constructivist branch of the Russian avant-garde, which rejected 
aesthetic values in favour of revolutionary ones. Her activities extended into propaganda, 
poetry, stage scenery and textile designs.

Stepanova practiced typography, book design and contributed to the magazine LEF throughout 
the early 1920s. As part of a government campaign to promote universal literacy, Stepanova 
organized a "Book Evening" in 1924. This was a performance that featured characters 
from pre- and post-revolutionary literature battling each other.

Varvara Stepanova, costume designs from the opening scene of 'An Evening of the Book', 1924
 Students in sports clothing  spelling out “intermission”
 Poster for the "Book Evening," 1924 
This is composed from scenes taken from Mai-Thu Perret's 3 film remake of a 
Soviet play from 1924, An Evening of the Book, presented at Lyon Biennale in 2007.
 The actors played the part of letters & books. 


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