Art before the early 1920’s was “old-fashioned” compared to new art movements called Constructivism. Constructivism was said to be the future of art, through the fact that it wanted to rid of the autonomous side of art and bring forth a more realistic art style. Constructivism contained new tools, a new style, and artists who wanted to move forward. Ultimately, the main goal of Constructivism was to spring the people of Russia into the future; however, Constructivism greatly focused on changing the thoughts about artists as only artists towards thinking of artists as more, such as architects, carpenters, or mathematicians. Many artists began to create interesting art without the use of paint and instead used materials such as wood, glass, and wire. With using these items, the artists moved toward a more realistic life of art. Constructivist wanted their works to extend beyond the canvas on which their art was created and also to use materials outside of paint to create masterpieces that would place them into a category outside of only being a painter/artist.
One Constructivist was El Lissitzky. He created numerous types of constructivist art that had a significant meaning of change. The meaning of his artwork is what made his art so popular. His art expressed more than just a feeling, but a movement towards the future. Lissitzky’s constructivist works all give a reminder of the past, while showing revolutionary changes of the future, meaning that his art was not a type of art created to forget the past, but created a movement of change towards the future.
Aleksandr Rodchenko was one of the founding fathers of this artistic movement. His intuitive mind and creative way of thinking helped him fulfill the qualities of Constructivism and put him amongst the elite artists in the world. His works expressed the elements of geometry usage, illusion of reality, & the idea of infinity (art extending beyond the canvas).
Vladimir Tatlin was considered another founding father of Russian Constructivism. Like Rodchenko, Tatlin sought to liberate art from frames and boundaries, making them three-dimensional in “real space”. Tatlin believed that while art should be visually pleasing, it should also serve a function. Tatlin’s use of practical and utilitarian materials reflected this belief in his Constructivist sculptures and models.
The Constructivist art movement related to Productivism in that the movements both believed art should be functional in society, as well as make a smooth transition in civilization to a more productive and modern population. Lissitzky, Rodchenko, and Tatlin agreed with and practiced these Constuctivist/Productivist values.