(b Kiev, 26 Feb 1878; d Leningrad [now St Petersburg],
15 May 1935).
Russian painter, printmaker, decorative artist and writer of Ukranian
birth. One of the pioneers of abstract art, Malevich was a central
figure in a succession of avant-garde movements during the period of the
Russian revolutions of 1905 and 1917 and immediately after. The style of
severe geometric abstraction with which he is most closely associated,
SUPREMATISM, was a leading force in the development of CONSTRUCTIVISM,
the repercussions of which continued to be felt throughout the 20th
century. His work was suppressed in Soviet Russia in the 1930s and
remained little known during the following two decades. The reassessment
of his reputation in the West from the mid-1950s was matched by the
renewed influence of his work on the paintings of Ad Reinhardt and on
developments such as Zero, Hard-edge painting and Minimalism.