Costume Design for the Ballet "Foire Russe"
Mikhail Larionov, French (born Russia), 1881 - 1964
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Larionov’s Russian folk costume design for an unrealized production is repurposed here for a witty character sketch of Sergei Diaghilev’s entourage. Represented, clockwise from left, are: Larionov, Léon Bakst, choreographer Léonide Massine, dancer Maria or Gala Chabelska, composer Lord Berners, Diaghilev, and (seated) Natalia Goncharova. Larionov captures his colleagues’ distinctive physical traits described by friends and contemporaries: Diaghilev’s “insolent little moustache, eyes oddly drooping at the corners;” Bakst’s portly figure and red hair that “burned like fire” in the sunlight. But more than that, he conveys the spirit of informal, intimate, and intense collaboration pervading this circle.