I discovered these great images of paintings by the artist Ivan Alexeevich Kudriashev here.

Painted in 1925, both entitled Construction of a Rectilinear Motion, they're both stunning examples of Futurism in Soviet art. There is very little about Kudriashev online, so if anyone has any more information, please let us know.

From the book Laboratory of Dreams, edited by John E. Bowlt & Olga Matic, in a chapter "Tsiolkovsky as a moment in the prehistory of the Avant-Garde" by Michael Holquist, about the Soviet father of rocketry Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, we learn the following:

"Kudriashev, an important member of the left-wing movement OST, was the son of a master model builder. In this capacity the elder Kudriashev had been invited by Tsiolkovsky to Kaluga, where the rocket engineer needed someone who could build wooden mock-ups of this machines. The young art student accompanied his father on these journeys, and actually helped translate Tsiolkovsky's technical drawings into miniature space ships.

The relation of the new sense of cosmic, interplanetary space to the manner in which space was perceived on Earth became a major preoccupation of Kudriashev. As the artist himself would write, it was his aim to provide in his paintings 'a realistic expression of the contemporary perception of space ... that is the substantial novelty that today is producing the space-painting ['prostranstvennaiazhivopis'].'

The connection of interplanetary travel to the striving of OST members can be demonstrated in a number of ways, as in the 1922 construction by Vladimir Liushin entitled A Station for Interplanetary Communication."

All of which is getting me very excited for the Futurism show at Tate Modern, starting next week (Friday 12th June 2009).