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 Alexander Golovin

Born:   March 1, 1863
Deceased:   April 17, 1930

Russian artist, stage designer


Alexander Yakovlevich Golovin was born into the family of theater, music, and book lovers. From early childhood he proved to have an absolute ear for music, and was seriously engaged into singing and playing the grand piano. He developed love for fine arts, when studying in grammar school. Further on his musical education in a big way influenced his pictorial works, which were indicatively described by his contemporaries as “music for the eyes”.

Alexander got secondary education in the Polivanovo grammar school. In 1882 — 1889 he studied at the Moscow School for Painting, Sculpture and Architecture, first in the Architecture Department and then in Painting Department, where his teachers were I. M. Pryanishnikov, V. E. Makovsky and V. D. Polenov.

In 1889 he attended Kolarossi Academy and Vitti school studio in Paris.

In the 1890s Alexander Golovin took part in activities of the Abramtsevo Circle, where he worked with wood and majolica.

Till 1901 he lived in Moscow, then in Petersburg and Tsarskoye Selo. Invited by the Managing director of the Moscow Office of Imperial Theaters V.A. Telyakovsky he started painting stage settings for performances of the Imperial Theaters, first in Moscow, and then in Petersburg.
An active member of the Mir Iskusstva (World of Art) group, and an interior designer, he participated with his friend Konstantin Korovin in designing the Russian Pavilion at the World Fair in Paris of 1900 and the Metropol Hotel in Moscow (majolica frieze, in particular) in 1900-1903.

He was a full member of the Academy of Arts from 1912 and the People’s Artist of RSFSR from 1928. 

Alexander Golovin was laid to rest at the Novodevichy Cemetery in St. Petersburg.

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