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George Costakis: A Russian Life in Art by Peter Roberts

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By Peter Roberts

This fabulous booklet paints a wealthy portrait of the Russian avant-garde and the intrigues which it kept for posterity. Roberts has written a desirable historical past of the recognized Costakis assortment and its author George Costakis who, for almost thirty years, used to be an administrative clerk within the Canadian embassy in Moscow. till his pressured departure from Russia in 1978 he amassed, always and painstakingly, the summary, constructivist and supremacist artwork of 1912 to 1930 which fell into professional disrepute less than Stalin. the writer, a former Canadian ambassador to Moscow, is a first-hand authority on Costakis and his tremendous obsession.

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Extra resources for George Costakis: A Russian Life in Art

Sample text

At two he came, and said, "Not today. Today the district commander came. " The next day he came at two or two-thirty in the morning. From the house to the camp was maybe three hundred metres, with nothing but the railway track between. We crossed. A door. He opened, and we went into a little room, maybe ten square metres. He sat me down and said, "Sit here. If anybody comes, say that Lieutenant So-and-so brought you. " So I sat ten or fifteen minutes, and in he came with Mitya. And when I saw my brother I had to speak, but he couldn't.

You know that my husband's locked up in there, and he's in the same mess as your brother. You can't not return me the money. " So I got the money to my brother through the same lieutenant, and he used it to help the Greeks. Well, there's the story. After all this I pulled myself together little by little and went back to Moscow. I arrived and right away sent the woman her money. And I thought, Maybe some time she will come to Moscow, and I'll take her by the hand to Red Square, and 111 fall on my knees in front of her.

Everyone was against me. My life became incredible. Through all my childhood, when I woke up in the morning, I would find a basket of fruit - mandarins, apples, grapes, pears - every day. All that stopped. Nobody spoke to me. So I decided, I can't bear any more of this. I'm going to run away. I put together a few things, a shirt, a bit of bread, and late one evening I left home and headed for the Savelovsky railway station. No ticket, but there was a train, ready to go, and people getting on. Well, I got into one car, sat for a moment.

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