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ArtistsDaniil Cherkes

Cherkes, Daniil Yakovlevich

(b. 1899 Moscow – d. 1971 Moscow)

Painter, graphic artist, director, animator, theater designer

1917 – Entered the Moscow University (Department of Physics and Math).

1918–1923 – Studied at Vkhutemas [Higher Art and Technical Studios]. Worked as a theater designer with Vsevolod Meyerhold, as a graphic artist in various publishing houses, and as a festivities decorator in Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod. Was one of the pioneers in the field of animated films.

1926 – Worked with a group of animators (Yu. Merkulov, I. Ivanov-Vano and others) at the Mezhrabpom-Rus film studio (known as Mezhrabpomfilm from 1928 on). Headed the studio’s animation department. Worked on creating advertisements and propaganda clips.

1927 – Debuted as a film director. Developed the so-called “album method” of animation together with I. Ivanov-Vano.

1930s – Worked at the Soyuzfilm studio (Moskinokombinat, Mosfilm).

Took part in exhibitions from 1933.

From 1935 on, devoted himself entirely to painting. Worked as a designer at the VSKhV [All-Union Agricultural Exhibition].

1941–1945 – Contributed to the TASS Windows propaganda posters.

But there is no longer a door. It is completely blocked up with broken pieces of the walls, with lumps and piles and heaps of glassy ice with red sparks. There is no way back, only forward. But where?

I, the Mother, I who live for a thousand cycles, I alone know where. I hear how we are hurtling towards Earth with a high-pitched whiz, a hundred times faster. Spinning; and everything is for this, and these last two, the man and the woman, have been fated to this by me. They are still alive, they are still people.

And I am a person. If I were not a person, if.. But I cannot say that aloud, and I know that I will smile at him now. There, I smiled…

“What did you do? What is that, the red thing over there?”

“That is Earth. I have turned towards Earth so that we… No, no, listen: there, on Earth, there is air. There are people, men and women, and they breathe all day long, all night long; they breathe as much as they want, and you don’t need to kill anymore there…

Yevgeny Zamyatin, “A Story about the Most Important Thing,” 1923

Ye. Zamyatin. Izbrannoe [Selected Works]. M.: Pravda, 1989 P. 220.

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