Serguei Oushakine publishes a two-volume anthology of early Soviet formalist and constructivist texts

Feb. 28, 2024

Serguei Oushakine just published two books in his multi-volume series The Formal Method: an Anthology of Russian Modernism. Earlier volumes came out in 2016 and included key texts of Soviet scholars and artists (vol. 1. “Systems” presents the works of Viktor Shklovsky, Sergei Eisenstein, Yuri Tynianov, Kazemir Malevich, and Alexei Gan; vol. 2. “Materials” consists of the texts by Dziga Vertov, Sergei Tretiakov, Boris Eikhenbaum, Aleksandr Rodchenko and Varvara Stepanova; vol. 3. “Technologies” brings together essays by El Lissitzky, Roman Jakobson, Vsevolod Meyerhold, Osip Brik, and Vladimir Tatlin).

The two new books combine articles of Soviet formalists and constructivists that are focused on various functionalist dimensions of art, cinema, architecture and the organization of labor. Called “Functions,” the volume includes selections of texts by Boris Arvatov, Alexei Gastev, Moisei Ginzburg, Lev Kuleshov, and Evgenii Polivanov. As before, each selection is preceded by an introduction of a contemporary expert on early Soviet culture.