MoMA
Kazimir Malevich. Reservist of the First Division. fall-winter 1914
Kazimir Malevich

Reservist of the First Division

fall-winter 1914
On view
Medium
Oil on canvas with collage of printed paper, postage stamp, and thermometer
Dimensions
21 1/8 x 17 5/8" (53.7 x 44.8 cm)
Credit
1935 Acquisition confirmed in 1999 by agreement with the Estate of Kazimir Malevich and made possible with funds from the Mrs. John Hay Whitney Bequest (by exchange)
Object number
814.1935

Isolated fragments of displaced body parts juxtaposed with collage elements and geometric planes of color comprise this unconventional military portrait. The "reservist" refers to an army-trained officer under the age of forty-three, who, like the artist, was liable to be called up in the event of war. A dominant blue square floats in place of the face one might expect. For Malevich, the form of the square embodied physical and spiritual qualities: "The square is not a subconscious form. It is the creation of intuitive reason. It is the face of the new art."

Gallery label from 2015
Provenance information
The artist, Moscow and Petrograd/Leningrad. 1914 - 1927
Hugo Haering, Berlin, 1927 - 1930. Malevich took approximately seventy works, including this one, from Leningrad to Berlin in 1927, where the work was displayed at Große Berliner Austellung. Malevich left these paintings and drawings in the care of a Berlin Architect named Hugo Haering when he returned to Leningrad later in 1927. In 1930, Haering transferred the collection to the care of Alexander Dorner, director of the Provinzialmuseum in Hannover. Malevich never returned to Germany to collect the works, and died in Leningrad in 1935 without leaving instructions directing the disposition of his art.
Provinzialmuseum (later Landesmuseum), Hannover, 1930 - 1935. Dorner exhibited the pictures until the Nazis came to power in 1933, and then placed them in storage to save them from possible destruction. In 1935, Alfred Barr, acting on behalf of The Museum of Modern Art, bought two paintings and two drawings from Dorner, and borrowed other works.
The Museum of Modern Art, New York, 1935 - present. The works remained on extended loan to The Museum of Modern Art until 1963, when they were acquired into the collection. The acquisition was confirmed in 1999 by agreement with Malevich's heirs and made possible with funds from the Mrs. John Hay Whitney Bequest (by exchange).

If you have any questions or information to provide about the listed works, please e-mail provenance@moma.org or write to:

Provenance Research Project
The Museum of Modern Art
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New York, N.Y. 10019

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Image permissions

In order to effectively service requests for images, The Museum of Modern Art entrusts the licensing of images of works of art in its collections to the agencies Scala Archives and Art Resource. As MoMA’s representatives, these agencies supply high-resolution digital image files provided to them directly by the Museum's imaging studios.

All requests to reproduce works of art from MoMA's collection within North America (Canada, U.S., Mexico) should be addressed directly to Art Resource at 536 Broadway, New York, New York 10012. Telephone (212) 505-8700; fax (212) 505-2053; requests@artres.com; artres.com. Requests from all other geographical locations should be addressed directly to Scala Group S.p.A., 62, via Chiantigiana, 50012 Bagno a Ripoli/Firenze, Italy. Telephone 39 055 6233 200; fax 39 055 641124; firenze@scalarchives.com; scalarchives.com.

Requests for permission to reprint text from MoMA publications should be addressed to text_permissions@moma.org.

Related links:
Outside North America: Scala Archives
North America: Art Resource