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Elena Guro: Painter, Poet and Pantheist. St. Petersburg - Karelian Isthmus 1877-1913

Elena Genrikhovna Guro was a painter and a poet who lived between 1877-1913. Her family was of French ancestry. Guro's poetical landscape was St. Petersburg and around the Baltic Sea, especially the Karelian Isthmus. Her time was the Russian Silver Age 1890-1914, which was a period of crucial change politically, scientifically, and - culturally. The freedom of censorship before World War I resulted in a spiritual renaissance. The Russian Avantgarde could begin. Guro was one of the driving forces among the Russian so called cubo-futurists, yet she is not widely known. Only in the good last decade she has received increasing attention, and then foremost as a writer.[1]

Members of Elena Guro's circle were the violinist, painter and later colour theorist Mikhail Matiushin; the inventor of the painting the Black Square (1915) Kazimir Malevich; the poet and painter Vladimir Maiakovsky; "The President of the Universe" Velimir Khlebnikov, who calculated historical processes mathematically and who constructed his own language, from the sounds of birds and laughter; and Nikolai Kulbin who introduced Wassily Kandinsky's "On the Spiritual in Art" in St. Petersburg, before it had even been published in Munich. These innovators all had two things in common: the belief in the artist as a mediator of the secrets of nature to the humans, and the influence from Elena Guro. [2]

Mostly it is Guro as a writer that has been considered. She wrote a number of volumes of prose impression, poems and plays. Here, I will also discuss her as a painter. As I see it, these two sides of her creativity are mutually enriching each other.

 

Cultural and geographical landscape

Before World War I the Russian and Scandinavian art worlds had a lot of contact. Everything happened everywhere almost at the same time. The atmosphere and the visual culture around the Baltic Sea was cosmopolitan. It was characterized by the meeting of the Finnish and the Swedish, the Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, the German and the Russian. A quick look at the map shows that the Baltic countries are on the route from Helsinki and St. Petersburg to the Continent. The borders between the countries were open. Although a visa was required to the isolationist czarist Russia, it was still possible for anyone who wanted to walk across the borders. It was common to know more than one language and many practiced more than one art form. A contemporary to Guro, the poetess Edith Södergran, who in one poem is "drinking power from the smallest and tenderest grasses", even started to write in German before deciding for her mothertongue Swedish, although she lived in Russia.

Many went to the big cities to study, foremost in Germany and in Russia. The spheres of culture were open and communicative. Many Scandinavian, Baltic and Russian artists studied and exhibited in Berlin. The Ukrainian-born sculptor Arkhipenko had a school there, and Herwarth Walden, after his divorce from the German poet Else Lasker-Schüler, remarried a Swedish woman. Walden organized the gallery and journal Sturm which was an important forum for making contacts in the world of art and literature in the 1920s. Finnish artists went to Petersburg to study at the Academy of Art because there was none in Helsinki. The Finnish Helene Schjerfbeck studied paintings at the Hermitage, Beda Schernschantz spent a summer in Vormsi/Wormsö in Estonia and Ellen Thesleff exhibited more than once in Russia. The contacts between the different countries were lively.

In the summertime many people relaxed on the seaside. They read the Norwegian writer Knut Hamsun's popular book Pan where the hero flees the life in the city to live nearer to nature. This wisdom was followed by many. In the summertime, the feet were to be let loose like if they were on pasture, the Nobel Prize winner Harry Martinsson wrote. In his science fiction poem Aniara the Karelian Isthmus was the closest to Paradise on earth one could possibly get.

In the fashionable resort Terijoki (today Zelenogorsk) on the Karelian Isthmus, you could choose spending your time watching a Strindberg-play, dine in one of the restaurants or gamble at the casino, maybe in the company of the poets Alexander Blok and Osip Mandelstam or the painter Ilia Repin who lived not far away all year around.

The intensive steam-ship traffic made it easy to go ashore along all the coast from Tammisaari/Ekenäs and Naantali/Nådendal in the Finnish archipelago meeting with the Stockholm archipelago on the other side with its more than twenty thousand islands, over the artist colonies in Kuokkala on the Karelian Isthmus and Jurmala outside of Riga down to Rügen in the south. In 1870 the railway was finished between St. Petersburg and Helsinki so now it became even cheaper and quicker to exchange the stuffy and dusty atmosphere from the stinking city-industries to the freshness of sand dunes and sea. When Rainer Maria Rilke felt the 'frozen' sand between his toes during a visit in Borgeby near the Sound in Southern Sweden he wrote in a letter to the Swedish writer and cultural critic Ellen Key: "Ich glaube, wir ... brauchen (trotzdem Italien sein Wohltun hat) doch bald wieder Norden, Weite, Wind".

This cultural landscape Elena Guro inhabitated with other intellectuals who discussed democratic rights, womens' right to vote, social welfare and educational reforms. They lived in irregular wooden houses often built for more than one family. Playful in styles, their architectural mixture of English cottages, Italian and Swiss villas, were colourfully painted.

 

International Exhibitions

Around the turn of the century the popular Art Nouveau and National Romantic styles emphasized the unique features of the nature of the North. For ornaments and decorations now local flowers and herbs were chosen instead of the earlier acantus and palmtree patterns from the Mediterranean. In this soil more daring experiments turned up.

Sergei Diaghilev, organizer of World of Art (Mir Iskusstva) an association of artists publishing a journal with the same name, was active in the promotion of Scandinavian and Finnish art in Russia. (Later he became the impresario for the world-touring Ballets Russes which had its base in Paris and Monte Carlo.) A three weeks stay in Scandinavia included a visit at the big international exhibition of art and industry in Stockholm 1897. Here Diaghilev became acquainted with Swedish, Danish and Norwegian artists. In October the same year he opened a huge show in the great hall of the Imperial Society for Encouragement of the Arts in St. Petersburg. Near to three hundred works were exhibited by, amongst others, the animal-painter Bruno Liljefors, the celebrated Anders Zorn, Eugène Jansson and Carl Larsson from Sweden. Norwegian participants were Edvard Munch, Kitty Kielland and Erik Werenskiøld, who at this time was busy illustrating the Viking Saga Snorre's Edda. Vilhelm Hammershøi and P.S. Krøyer came from Denmark. A year later Dhiaghilev made a big exhibition with Finnish artists.

These exhibitions gave a rich material to the artists on the other side of the sea. The often occuring moonlit evening and winter landscapes of the Nordic artists did not lose their effect even in black-and-white print and were therefore well suited for illustrations. Between 1898-1904 the lavish World of Art journal was filled with Scandinavian artists. This impact on Russian art around the turn of the last century, is therefore not to be underestimated. The young Elena Guro was one of these artists. As a teenager she saw these shows, and read this journal.

 

"Northern Romantic Tradition"

The worship of light, the long "white" summer nights, the severe landscape and snowy winters belong to the common exotism of the North. To the art historian Robert Rosenblum, the painters representing the "northern romantic tradition" were Caspar David Friedrich, William Turner and the early Mondrian. With sceneries devoid of people, nature was left to itself to be contemplated. By its emptiness, except for lonely trees and naked rocks, it was interpreted as loaded with deeper meaning which opens up for religious and sublime experiences. The one who is left alone in such a place is "confronted by the overwhelming, incomprehensible immensity of the universe", Rosenblum says. [3] Although beyond his scope, Scandinavia and Russia would also well fit into this tradition of vistas that by their void of people are seen as transcended with spirituality. Communicating the language of the gigantic forests and expands of sea, sky and open fields, Guro and her husband, the musician and painter Mikhail Matiushin (1861-1934), would make important proponents with their supernatural experiences.

Between 1909 -14 the so-called cubo-futurism developed in Russia merging images and words. Synthesis in art was the catchword of these days. The artists' association Union of Youth (Soiuz molodëzhi) in St. Petersburg was one spokesman. Driving forces were, in addition to Guro and Matiushin, the Latvian critic Voldemars Matvejs (1877-1914), who wrote under the pseudonym Vladimir Markov. The Union of Youth arranged five exhibitions in Petersburg and one in Riga.

In Paris, Picasso had to go to Africa and Gauguin to Tahiti to come closer to genuine and "primitive" art. In Moscow, the artists' group Jack of Diamonds (Bubnovyi valet) stressed their affinity with the folk art from the Southern parts of Russia, whereas the participants in Union of Youth did not have to go anywhere but exploited their domestic pagandom with norse gods and Vikings as their treasure box for new images mixed with their contemporary mass-produced cheap prints.

The painting style of Guro was of a searching kind in the vicinities of the French Nabi, impressionism, post-impressionism, futurism and cubism. But when it came to her worldview, many aspects of it coincided with that of the Russian symbolists. Here it was more the pantheistic outlook of the second generation symbolists painters of the Blue Rose group (Golubaia roza) with Pavel Kuznetsov, an adept of Viktor Borisov-Musatov's, and the younger generation of poets such as Andrei Bely and Viacheslav Ivanov who attracted her, than the decadent part of symbolism. With its roots in folk art and its pantheistic outlook, Scandinavian painting, was far more important for the symbolist writers and painters in Russia than the literary approach of, for example, the Munich-secessionists.

The Russian avantgarde is usually associated with futurism and constructivism linked with modernity and industrialism. But for Guro with her interest in nature she rather belongs to a organic-oriented trend emanating from German romanticism. In Russia, both symbolists and futurists were much more interested in nature than, say their counterparts among the Italian machine-glorifying futurists.

 

Pantheism

Guro read many writers interested in 'God in everything'. She was drawn to the pantheism of Whitman, Verhaeren, Ruskin, Bergson and  Lev Tolstoy. The American writer Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass (1855) is imbued with a community of everything living. In his book Modern Painters (5 vols. 1843-60) the English art critic and essayist John Ruskin ascribed human feelings to non-human subjects, especially to trees. The artist was believed to be an inspired teacher and prophet who mirrored the visual creation of God in his art. Ruskin was against the effects of the industrial revolution, and supported old craftmanship which was important for the Arts and Crafts movement and served as a source box for the avantgarde. The Belgian critic Émile Verhaeren (1855-1916) is less known, but also an proponent of the green wave Guro belonged to. Verhaeren was also against the uncritical acceptance of the factories that turned man into a passive instrument without a will of his own. Verhaeren who wrote about James Ensor's painterly explorations of fantasy and hallucination in his landscapes of wind and waves, comparing the artist to a "seer".

To give you an idea of how these texts could sound, let us listen to the painter James Whistler's "The Ten O'Clock Lecture" first delivered in 1885, which was translated into many languages: "Nature contains the elements, in color and form, of all pictures, as the key-board contains the notes of all music. But the artist is to pick, and choose, and group with science, these elements, that the result may be beautiful - as the musician gathers his notes, and forms his chords, until he brings forth from chaos glorious harmony... Nature, who, for once, has sung in tune, sings her exquisite song to the artist alone..." [4]

Guro was inspired by the German idealists Schlegel and Schopenhauer who saw nature as animated and spiritualized. She was interested in Buddhism, Hinduism, mystery religions and Gnosticism with additions from natural sciences, archaeology, medicine, evolutionism and Campanella's City of the Sun. She read the French philosopher Henry Bergson on how to catch a partial glimpse of the universe, and the German physican and psychologist Gustav Fechner, according to whom "one human being dies, when one eye of the universe closes". [5]

She also took interest in Solovyov and in Swedenborg. In the Russian philosopher Vladimir Solovyov's (1853-1900) Sophiology the concept of all-unity is prominent. "Sophia" (wisdom), the female principle of earth, unites earth with the male principle of heaven ("theos"-God). The Swedish mystic and scientist Emanuel Swedenborg (1688-1772) was widely read in St. Petersburg before 1917. Swedenborg focused the relationship between spirit and matter in connection with anatomy, physiology, and psychology. He defined a doctrine of direct "correspondences" between earthly phenomena and those of "the other world" in a neo-Platonic way.

In art, the correspondences of colours and musical sounds of Baudelaire and Rimbaud set the tone.

 

Guro's Painting

The very heart of Guro's style is impressions from careful observation. She spent endless hours following the changes of colours in nature in different seasons, different times of the day and in various weather. The resulting knowledge from these enormous efforts, she then used in her painting. She combined the browns and greys of  Picasso's and Braque's Cubism, with colour combinations that had emanated from her observations. The long dawns and dusks stretched into long periods excellent for colour-viewing. And truly so, it is not the strongest illumination which lures the brightest colours to come forth, but rather a soft, damped down light of the Northern hemisphere.

In Novum Organum ('New Organ') from 1620, the British renaissance philosopher Francis Bacon pointed out the importance to leave the books with their interpretations, and instead to turn directly to nature: "Those however who aspire not to guess and divine, but to discover and know; who propose not to devise mimic and fabulous worlds of their own, but to examine and dissect the nature of this very world itself; must go to the facts themselves for everything." [6] Goethe also compared nature to a book which should be read attentively. And also for him it was colours that were revealed. Both Aristotle and Goethe realized that colour is born between darkness and light.

"There is only one teacher - nature" Matiushin echoes Guro over and over again, in his memoirs. "Nature can teach us to  create" he said, because "observations in nature is a first step in order to attain a higher dimension", a "new spatial understanding". [7]

From Guro's diaries, correspondence and Matiushin's reminiscences, we are given a picture of a Guro who spent the best part of her time in the country-side. To her, the city was a "stone pocket" which prevented her from coming in contact with the sources of organic life, the basis for her creative force. [8] To her, the city seemed inorganic and dead. Early in the mornings, Guro left the house for the forest and the sea.

"Guro devoted herself to nature. She said: 'for the seeker there are countries not yet seen to live in'." But the artist who already has ready recipies "nature does not like, and for them it is a closed book [...] Guro gave nature everything she had, physically and mentally and in return, nature revealed for her "like for nobody else" its 'secrets' of growing and dynamics." [9]

Guro did not only simply look at her surrounding, she also practiced different observational techniques through meditation and yoga. These techniques helped her to concentrate on the rich flow from her open senses - and to let scents, sounds, lights, shades and colours into her wide-open and non-prejudiced 'pure mind'. This deliberate training from the "unconscious" via the "subconscious" would result in a complete "consciousness". [10] Thanks to this heightened attentiveness, comparable to an "animated embracement", visual impressions of colours and forms would apperar different in this condition than to the normal eye. As a result from this training, the field of observation would be "freed, wide and indifferent to deluding fragments of colour and form." [11]

The knowledge resulting from this new way of looking Guro used in her painting. In a letter from the countryside Guro the painter writes to Matiushin the musician: "I have to play on so many tones at the same time, and to such an extent master the interrelations, but the result will lead to such a knowledge of how to use colours, that I will endure. I am convinced it will be worth it..." [12]

 

Language of Nature

Guro wanted to create a new visual and poetic language. It was the invisible relations between the phenomena that she looked-out for. Searching pristine forms in prose and painting, she made close-ups of findings from her morning walks - pine-trees, trunk, bark, pine-cones, stones, mushrooms, and found freshness in local folklore. The everyday is streaming through the senses and she created unheard words. In her poem "Finljandia" - "Finland", Guro strove to transmit the onomatopoetical sounds from Finnish lullabies, intertwined with the mimicking of the wind sighing in the pine forests: "Shuiat, - shuiiat ... lulla, lolla, lalla-lu ... ti-i-i, ti-i-u-u .... shuiat, shuiat, ... tere-dere-dere.... Khu! .... Tio-i...vii- i .... u". [13]

Guro was believed by her contemporaries to be a natural synaesthete, in the sense that 'real' sensations from one sense faculty triggers the perception of another; i.e., you hear something which makes you see something or the other way around.

She took notes of sounds during her walks, that inspired her adept Boris Ender (1893-1960) to write zaum-poetry (za-beyond, um- mind, intellect, senses), a poetry which in this era of Esperanto was to become a new universal language.

"U - ShVI - GL. V

Kh, EV. VIU. V. UV

GVE - AV -S.V

GLIAGL. G. U

Fir trees and ice. Above zero. Evening January the First. " [14]

It was the correspondences between the colours that made her react; the contact where sound floats into image and sensations from different modalitites met.

 

'Higher' realities

In Russia, Guro was one of the first artists they who took interest in what was called the fourth dimension.

Guro's pantheistic formulation of man's identity as a creature including a merging with cosmos, was a combination of German idealism with ideas on the fourth dimension as "hyperspace" (and not as time), a notion popular from around the turn of the centrury 1900. [15] Many artists believed in the existence of another reality beyond the one we normally see, and that it was the task of the artist to show the way into this higher reality by making it visible for philosophers and scientists.

Guro believed in a higher reality physically embodied as a living "organism". She made analogical connections between the anatomy of the human body and the 'body' of the earth. For her, the sky is the forehead and the sea are the eyes. Here the individual has become a metonymic part, a "microcosmic monad" mirroring the "macrocosmic monad", or the world. This belief was shared by many philosophers and mystics. The theosophist Pyotr Uspensky (1878-1947- adept of G.I. Gurdjieff) said in his book Tertium Organum. Keys to the Enigmas of the World inspired by William James' "pluralist universe" and Henry Bergson's "snapshots of reality", Uspensky said: "Within ourselves the visual consciousness is united with the eyes, and the tactility with the skin. But neither skin nor eyes knows anything about the sensations of the other. They are unified and related only in a 'wider consciousness' which is the unity of all humans, animals and plants." [16] It is thus not isolated parts that form this meta-creature, but their interrelations. And those who realised this had reached "cosmic consciousness" which was the same as to have become a "superman" (sverkhchelovek). [17]

Life is motion and therefore life is evidence of an existing higher existence, Guro thought. The intermediate forms between higher and lower dimensions exist in the borderland between the organic and the inorganic world. It is obviously visible that plants and flowers from the organic world embrace motion, but even stones and crystals of the inorganic world were seen as a "presumable seat of activity", the mystic mathematician Charles Howard Hinton said in his book The Fourth Dimension from 1904. [18]

In a text Guro wrote together with Matiushin, in 1912/13, they say: "Growing ever slender as they recede into the sky, the branches of the trees are like bronchial tubes - the basic element of respiration [...] The sacred earth breathes through them, the earth breathes through the sky. The result is a complete circle of earthly and celestial metabolism. They are the signs of an ulterior life." [19] The observations in nature were also an important source "to disclose the great power of motion set free". To achieve an understanding of organic dynamics and formations of life, growing material such as roots, boughs, cankers and excrescenses on trees, etc are studied. [20] So this 'organic' or 'pantheist' kind of vision and attentiveness, would lead to the ability to see this, a higher "living organism". [21]

For Guro nature served as an entrance to these higher realities. Guro often expressed herself in terms of seasonal cyclical growing, by metaphores like "seed" and "sprout" to mark a beginning, that developes "grows" into a mature fruit. But this growing was "hidden" and "unrecognizable" for most people. Nature was to reveal her secrets but only for those who were "attentive" enough. [22] Guro's method to approach these spiritual realities was by observations of the organic world. She believed that if she would follow the motion of growing, this would possibly give hints to the riddle of life hidden in other realitites.

 

Reception

In descriptions of Guro as a person, we are given insecurity and shyness, complexes and difficulties in socializing. But when reading her books, and looking at her pictures, the impression one gets is very different. Here we meet a self-confident and independent artist.

Her brush is bold with its secure strokes and assured lines. Not to talk about her choice of colours. As a colourist she is extremely rich. In some of her oil-paintings, she has filled her brimming brush with not only one, but with numerous colours. Her paintings show a deep knowledge of the workings of colour phenomena. Her drawings have a quality of three-dimensionality.

In her choice of subjects, her writing and her painting largely correspond. In one series, she makes close-ups of a tree (a recurring subject): first the whole tree, then the trunk, then the bark, a knot hole. Or mushrooms becoming "part of cosmos" as their little white heads start showing above the moss. As a poet her images are surprising: In her book Baby Camels in the Sky (posthumously  published in 1914), she describes clouds as "goodhearted, lanky baby camels, covered with an aureole of fluff". [23]

Her poetical language is that of intimacy, that gives fresh images painted onto the retina in the eyes before the light goes out before sleep, rather than to be declamed in megaphones. Her art needs time to contemplate. It is not the art of action, but rather of states of mind. Her play Autumnal Dream she dedicated "to those who are not in a hurry". [24] This strategy of taking time, is essential also in making contrasting colours come forth.

As we have seen her, the intellectual level of Guro's method was very advanced. Yet in the reception of her art, she met with the same destiny as many of her contemporaries: In the reception of her art, her personality and her artistic work merged. To Guro, the "primitive" or the "naive" was a deliberate approach, but as many of her female colleagues (Paula Modersohn Becker, Georgia O'Keeffe only to mention two), the reception of her underestimated the intentional approach of her artistic work. Her "female nature" diminished her to "identify" with nature, and thus implicitly not with "culture". Because she in her art was interested in nature, she has been received as having no method, but only a "natural connection" with nature. As if she were speaking the language of nature simply because it is part of nature.

She produced a great number of drawings, water-colours, canvasses, and outlines for poems and prose. Still, deceased at the age of thirtysix, she did not live long enough to fully realize herself as an artist. As a painter Guro did not create a homogeneous style. A lot of what she has left is still in a stage of sketches. Neverthelsess, these works have qualities of fresh spontaneity and directness. After her early death, Matiushin kept Guro's diaries, sketches and paintings as a source of inspiration.

To sum up: Although Elena Guro was both a painter and a writer, her visual side has hardly been considered. Why? I think there are at least two reasons for this. One is that her estate was spread to so many different hands after her death, which has made it practically difficult to study her, and following the large part is still not sufficiently studied. The second reason is that photographs do not do justice to her pictures. Her visual language is to a large extent built around an extraordinary big amount of colours that are hardly possible to convey in other media.

Guro's ability to cross the borders between sound and vision was an important incitement for the movement of Organic Culture, that was elaborated in Leningrad in the 1920s by Matiushin and Guro's adept Boris Ender and his sisters Ksenia and Maria Ender. The issue here was not to produce and to analyse images in the sense of symbols or metaphores, but rather about impressions, as parallels  of different senses. Under the motto of Scientific Organization of Labour in the Arts (Nauchnaia Organizatsiia Truda v iskusstve) laboratory research was made where colour figured prominently. Colours that influence space, forms, contours, perspective, words, sounds, noise and vice versa. Guro took interest in barely noticeable differences and other visual phenomena that were scrutinized in Matiushin's colour laboratory during the 1920s in Leningrad, the result of which was a colour theory published in 1932 as the last manifesto of the avantgarde. But that is another story.

 

Lecture given at the Visby conference on "The Baltic in Literature and Art" in November 2002

 
[1] In order to prepare this presentation I have used original written and visual material by Elena Guro and her husband Mikhail Matiushin (1861-1934). Guro produced a number of illustrated books in small editions, with prose, poetry and plays such as Hurdy Gurdy (Sharmanka) 1909, Autumnal Dream (Osennii son) 1912, Baby Camels in the Sky (Nebesnye verbliuzhata) 1914, aswell as in group miscellanies (Troe and Sadok sudei). Other material consists of diaries, correspondence, outlines to essays and articles; sketches, paintings and drawings. It is currently stored in archives and museum funds, as well as in private hands, mostly in Russia. When I began to work in the archives in 1992, most of the Guro estate had not been published. Since then Guro has gained in popularity in Russia and fragments of her works, at least her writing, has now partly been published and/or republished. Her painting oeuvre however, is even less known. All the translations from Russian to English in this text, have been done by the author, MT.

[2] Guro's influence on others has been stressed in writings by Evgeny Kovtun, Zoia Ender, Milica Banjanin, Isabel Wünsche and Tanya Nikolskaya.

[3] Robert Rosenblum Modern Painting and the Northern Romantic Tradition: Friedrich to Rothko. Thames and Hudson 1988 p. 14.

[4] Reprinted in Henri Dorra ed. Symbolist Art Theories. A Critical Anthology. University of California Press 1994 pp. 67-70.

[5] As quoted in Pyotr Uspensky (in the west also Ouspensky) Tertium Organum. Kliuch k zagadkam mira (first ed. 1911) Reprint. Andreev i synov'ia. SPb 1992 p. 148.

[6] From The Works of Francis Bacon, 14 Vols. eds. Spedding, Ellis & Heath, London 1857-64, Vol 4 p. 28, as quoted in Svetlana Alpers The Art of Describing. University of Chicago Press 1983 p. 100. Here Alpers also includes an interesting discussion on Bacon's optical influences on Dutch art of the seventeenth century.

[7] Matiushin "Tvorchesky put'..."

[8] Her diaries and correspondence are in RGALI in Moscow and the Pushkin House, SPb.

Matiushin "Russkie kubo-futuristy. Vospominaniia Mikhaila Matiushina" ['Russian Cubo-Futurists. Mikhail Matiushin's Autobiography'] K istorii russkogo avangarda [On the History of the Russian Avant-Garde'] ed. Nikolai Khardzhiev, Stockholm 1976 p. 136.

[9] Matiushin "Tvorchesky put' khudozhnika" ['The Artist's Creative Path']. 1933-34. Private archive SPb.

[10] Matiushin "Opyt khudozhnika novoi mery" ['The Artist's Experience of a New Dimension'9]  in Khardzhiev 1976 p. 183.

[11] Matiushin "Opyt khudozhnika.." 1976 p. 183.

[12] Quoted from a letter from Guro to Matiushin, August 1907.  Russian State Archive for Literature and Art Moscow: RGALI fund 134, inventory 1, unit of deposit 44, page 204 with reverse side.

[13] Troe. Sankt Peterburg 1913, p. 73.

[14] Zoia Ender "Eksperimenty Borisa Endera v oblasti zaumnogo stikhoslozheniia", Zaumnyi futurizm i dadaizm v russkoi kul'tury. Bern 1991 p. 279.

[15] The fourth dimension as a "hyperspace reality" has been described by Linda Darlyle Henderson in The Fourth Dimension and Non-Euclidian Geometry in Modern Art. Princeton University Press 1983 as well as in her "The Merging of Time and Space: 'The Fourth Dimension in Russia from Ouspensky to Malevich", The Structurist, Saskatoon No. 15/16 1975/76, pp. 97-108.

[16] Ibid. pp. 144-145.

[17] Ibid. p. 233.

[18] Charles Howard Hinton, (Russian transliteration is 'Khinton') Chetvertoe izmerenie i era novoi mysli. Petrograd 1915.

[19] Guro and Matiushin 1912-1913 "Chuvstvo chetvertogo izmereniia" ['The sense of a fourth dimension'] Manuscript Department of the Russian Literature Institute, Pushkin House. RO IRLI SPb, fund 656, published in Organika. Novaia mera vospriiatiia prirody khudozhnikami russkogo avangarda 20 veka. Ed. A. Povelikhina SPb 2001, p. 33.

[20] Central Archive of Literature and Art TsGALI SPb, fund 244, inventory 1, unit of deposit 21, sheet 45.

[21] Matiushin "Opyt khudozhnika..."  p. 173.

[22] Matiushin "Russkie kubofuturisty"  p. 139.

[23] Elena Guro. Nebesnye verbliuzhata. SPb 1914, p. 1.

[24] Elena Guro. Osennii son. Petrograd 1912. PÅ SIDAN EFTER TITELBLADET INNAN BOKEN BÖRJAR, ej paginerat.