Born Bagdadi, Georgia, 1893; died Moscow, 1930
Vladimir Vladimirovich Maiakovskii moved to Moscow with his family following the death of his father in 1906. From 1910 to 1911, he enrolled intermittently at the Stroganov School for Technical Drawing, taking time off to study painting in the studios of Dmitrii Kelin and Stanislav Zhukovskii. A gifted poet as well as an artist, he published his first book of poems the following year. Maiakovskii supported the October Revolution in 1917. In October 1919, he joined the ROSTA studio, contributing designs and texts until production terminated in February 1922. In February 1930, Maiakovskii broke away from the Left Front of the Arts for the Russian Association of Proletarian Writers (RAPP), an organization associated with the rise of Socialist Realism. His friends and comrades interpreted this tactical realignment as a betrayal. On April 14, 1930, he committed suicide. The TASS studio paid tribute to the artist-poet by including his verses on at least seven TASS posters between October 1941 and April 1946, and no doubt his artistry inspired many more.
Vladimir Vladimirovich Maiakovskii. For an Entire Month the Turks did Float, beneath a Crescent Moon; but Like the Turks in the City Sinop They Didn't Forsee the Flood, c. 1914. Wirt D. Walker Trust.