Painter and graphic artist, people's. hood. Of the RSFSR (1966), corresponding member Q. AH THE USSR (1967). In 1912-16 he studied at the hood. school of M. Bernstein and L. Sherwood in St. Petersburg. Lived and worked in Petrograd - Leningrad and Moscow. From 1909 to participate in exhibitions. Collaborated in the well. Satirikon, Argus, etc. In 1920-22 he worked in the poster Department. Petrograd. GROWTH has created more than 500 posters. In 1918-21 he taught at Petrograd. Somase. One of the founders of the art Fig. children's book, 1922-34 artist and hood. ed. of the Children's Department Giza in Leningrad. In 1942-45 worked in the "Windows TASS", Zh. "The red army". Paintings and portraits ("Portrait of T. V. Šišmarevoj", 1935), easel graphics (cycle "Washerwoman", 1920-25; "the Panel revolution", 1922; "NEP", 1925-27), Fig. for a children's book ("the Elephant" Kipling, 1921; "the Circus" Marshak, 1925; "Mr. Twister" Marshak, 1933), etc.
V. V. Lebedev used to be a professional - since 1911, he published pictures in magazines, while continuing to complete their education in various private studios in St. Petersburg. Main school it always had her own creative practice, driven by an insatiable desire for perfection, and studied it for almost the entire life.
Even as a Professor of the Petrograd GShM (1918-21), he persistently grasped the principles of cubist painting by implementing their search in the graphic series "Washerwomen" (1920-25), as well as in political posters "Window GROWTH" (1920-21)
Bold simplification and flattening shape, sharp mapping the few bright colors gave to his compositions a kind of monumentality. As a direct continuation of the posters made a series of satirical drawings "Panel revolution" (1922), which brought the artist fame.
The most strong and fruitful quest Lebedev affected his book graphics. Picturesque experiments helped him from drawings to the "Elephant" by R. Kipling (1921), open a new era in illustrating children's books. Found was developed in books by S. Marshak, permanent collaborator Lebedev - "Yesterday and today", "Ice cream", "silly little mouse", "the Circus" (all 1925), "baggage" (1926), "How planer made the plane" (1927), etc.
Lebedev headed in the years 1924-33 art edition of the Department of children's and youth literature of the State publishing house, turning it into a center for the creation of highly books for children. He drew the publisher artists of his generation - V. M. Konashevich, N. A. Stipa, N. F. Lapshina, V. M. Ermolaev, educated young - A. Pakhomov, Yu Vasnetsov, E. I. Charushin, V. I. Cordova, E. A. Butovskogo etc.
Intense publishing activity does not interfere with his work. In the mid-1920s. he presented a sharp satirical series "NEP", "New life", "Love punks". Everyday work with nature resulted in a series of brilliant drawings "Acrobat", "Ballerina", "Guitarist" and numerous sketches of Nude Nudes, executed with consummate skill.
In the late 1920s, he returned to painting, making a series polyexponentially "still life with guitar" and a small series of still life "Fruit basket". Later, after an ironic series of "Girl with bouquet" (1933), he wrote a number of excellent portraits of women - T. V. Šišmarevoj (1934), SD Lebedeva (1936), K. George (1937), in which, moving from cold rationalistically their previous works to sense the beginning, originally revived many of the techniques of impressionist painting.
Similar changes were outlined in the early 1930s in his book graphics, which gradually began to get features improvisational ease and immediacy. Book "Winter - summer - parrot" O. F. Bergholz, "Mister Twister", "baleen and stripes" and "fairy Tales, songs, riddles," Marshak designated him a new stage in creativity of the artist.
But already in 1931, several of his works were heavily criticized in the official press, and five years later he, together with V. M. Konashevich, became the object of coarse attacks in the article "About the artists-BMA" ("the Truth", 1936, March 1).
The article, which served as the signal for persecution of Leningrad artists of children's books, was part of a broader ideological campaign against a number of artists of Leningrad. These events produced a devastating effect on the bewildered artist.
During the war Lebedev lived in Moscow where he collaborated in poster workshop "Windows TASS", illustrated books. Book graphics, he continued, and he returned to Leningrad (1950).
Many of his post-war books have received high praise - "Where did the table come from?" (1946) and "Colorful book" (1947) by S. Marshak, "the Three bears". Tolstoy (1948), etc. They are really indicative of his skill, but they all increased the naturalness and sweetness. The same thing happened with the new versions of his previous illustrations, and even paintings. Mitigating the ideological environment in the 1950 - 60s, which allowed the artists a little rise, does not bring Lebedev, and the last years of his creative life was the lingering agony of this once brilliant master and a strong man.