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 Avgust Cernigoj  (1898 - 1985)

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Lived/Active: Italy/Slovenia/Austria      Known for: constructivism, architectural design

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Ad Code: 4
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Please note: Artists not classified as American in our database may have limited biographical data compared to the extensive information about American artists.

Avgust Cernigoj, also known in Italian as Augusto Cernigoi (August 24, 1898, – November 17, 1985) was a Slovene painter, known for his avant-garde experiments in Constructivism.

He was born in Trieste, then part of the Austrian-Hungarian Empire.  He finished Secondary School of Arts and Crafts in Trieste, continuing his studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich.  Later on, he attended the Bauhaus school of crafts and fine arts in Weimar, which had a profound impact on his development as an artist, having come into contact with Abstraction, the Russian avant-garde and particularly Constructivism through the works and teachings of Wassily Kandinsky, who brought it from Russia.

He returned to Slovenia, where he became friends with the avant-garde poet Srecko Kosovel.  In 1924, he prepared the first Constructivist exhibition in Slovenia, held in the premises of the Secondary Technical School in Ljubljana.  The exhibits included architectural models, reliefs and sculptures, as well as parts of machines, overalls and politically artistic slogans.

In 1925, he became a political exile due to his socially critical and provocative art and was forced to return to Trieste.  There, he co-operated with an avant-garde stage manager Ferdo Delak in the forming of an international avant-garde magazine called Tank.

Cernigoj's main contribution to the Slovene fine arts lies in the introduction of collage, which broadened the understanding of art and artistic work.

He died in Sežana, Slovenia.

In 1998, two Slovenian postal stamps were issued in his honour.[


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