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Futurism: Machine Spirit is More Important than Woman’s Beauty

The art movement developed in the first quarter of the 20th century, mainly in Italy and Russia. Some ironically called it scandalous cubism. The founding fathers urged to stop adoring the art of the past, and to exalt the industrial spirit of the future: to draw airplanes, cars, metal bridges, steamers and other achievements of the progress.
Filippo Marinetti, one of the founders of literary futurism, said: "The heat emanating from a piece of wood or iron excites us more than the smile and tears of a woman." The technical perfection of the machine was considered more important than human emotion.
The style is often confused with Cubism. The fundamental difference isthat the Cubists did not celebrate technological progress.
The futurists often sing the praises of military technology, explosions and revolution as the driving force of progress. Futurists tried to convey the dynamism, variability of the world, and for this purpose they borrowed techniques from the Cubists. The paintings are characterized by clear lines, zigzags, bevelled cones, spirals, fragmentation of objects into geometric shapes. A vivid example is the work by Gino Severini, Red Cross Train Passing a Village, kept in the Guggenheim Museum. On the artist’s canvases, trains are divided by clouds of steam so that to create the effect of the machine’s movement.
Giacomo Balla. Walk the dog

Futurists often emphasized the mobility of the world, depicting successive movements on one canvas. For example, see one of the canvases by Giacomo Balla — it seems that the artist drew a storyboard of a run, and superimposed the drawings one on top of the other.

The main futurists of the Russian world are the artist Wladimir Burliuk and his brothers, the poets David and Mykola. In his estate, David Burliuk founded the Gilea association, which included Mayakovsky, Khlebnikov, Kruchyonykh. In Russian art, literature and painting of the futurist period were closely intertwined.
Futurists paid a lot of attention to external brilliance, progress, but did not pay attention to the emotional state, so the style lost its public interest in several years. After the First World War, no one turned to it.
David Davidovich Burliuk. Time
1918, 69×59 cm
Chief artists associated with futurism were Giacomo Balla, Umberto Boccioni, Gino Severini.