▣ Nail Art # 1: Maquillage du Malevich ▣

Friday, January 16, 2015

When one thinks of Soviet design, I would guess several images come to mind. The hammer & sickle, fur hats (I know I can’t resist), and maybe even the graphic design ubiquitous with Cold War propaganda. With this last image in mind, enter: Kazimir Malevich.

Born in 1879 in Kiev, Malevich was renowned for his geometric designs, simplistic color schemes, and for being the harbinger of the Suprematist art movement around the time of World War I. Other than producing his highly conceptual and avant-garde paintings, Malevich was a theoretician whose artistic prominence arose concurrently with Communism. I am such a fan of his work that his “Black Circle” work is actually the background of Russian Dressing.

I decided to use him as nail art inspiration. Using his simplistic color schemes, basic geometry, and painterly graphic design, his Suprematist Composition (1915) was my work of choice. Notice the textured composition on the black shapes. I even added this textured effect to my manicure!

I’m currently reading Made in Russia: Unsung Icons of Soviet Design, which is pretty much a picture book, but most products in the book (concentrating from the 1930s-80s) took inspiration from Malevich.

I used the classic OPI "OPI Red"; OPI "Alpine Snow"; and Maybelline Color Show in "Onyx Rush."

I layered the red on first. 

I'll be completely honest; I was a bit sloppy with the overall application, but stay tuned as this "sloppiness" surprisingly worked to my advantage.
I added the white polish next, making sure to leave a strip of red outline that would peek out. 
Finally I added the black over the red and white layers. 

...And here's where I start to get especially sloppy (yet effective).
I did this application pretty late at night as I watched Netflix. I had planned on watching an extensive amount of TV, but it ended up being an early night for me. I didn't fall asleep with wet nails, but they certainly weren't dry. 
Alas, I woke up, and my nails had an almost "crackly" (not "crackled"/"shattered" like this as the effects were subtler than that) texture...EXACTLY like Malevich's "Suprematist Composition # 1" that had inspired my nails in the first place. I guess it was a lazy, or should I say sleepy, job well done. 

This is the first in my new Nail Art series, so expect more nail art in posts to come! 

And here are a few more of my Malevich favorites:

xo  SFB

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