Georges Costakis (1913-1990) was a Greek collector of Russian avant-garde art. His collection numbers some 1,300 works assembled in the 1950s and 1960s that are today primarily housed by the State Museum of Contemporary Art in Thessaloniki, Greece, and the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow. Around 200 of these works, mostly oil paintings, watercolors, gouaches and drawings made in the 1910s and 1920s, have been loaned for this show.

This is the first exhibition in Paris on Russian avant-garde art since 1993. Paintings by well-known artists such as Malevich, Popova, Klioune, Rodtchenko, Lissitzky and Tatlin are on view alongside works by lesser-known artists such as Kudriashev, Redko, Matiouchine, Ender, Filonov and Nikritine that are being presented in France for the first time. Censored by the Soviet Union in 1934, avant-garde Russian art could only leave the country, and be taken abroad, where it would be safe, through bribes or artists that emigrated. Indeed, when the exhibition "Paris-Moscou" (Paris-Moscow) was staged at the Centre Pompidou in 1979, the Russian art on display created a sensation. The revived interest in Russian avant-garde is happening alongside the current enthusiasm for Russian contemporary and late twentieth-century political art from Russia.

November 13, 2008, through March 2, 2009
61 rue de Grenelle
75007 Paris
T. +33 (0)1 42 22 59 58