Exter Aleksandrovna Aleksandra, the ‘Amazon of the Russian avant-garde’, left Russia in 1924 having already achieved success as an artist and acclaimed theatre set designer with a reputation as a pioneer of Russian progressive art. The influence of French landscape painting can be seen in her early landscapes and still-lifes. After a period of enthusiasm for futurism and cubism, she began to create individual compositions, often using collage methods. Her abstractionism was a kind of laboratory of forms, colouristics, textures and rhythmics. The ornamentality of the artist’s paintings can be most keenly felt in the non-figurative compositions. In 1915 Exter jointed K.S. Malevich’s group in Moscow. At this time she showed an interest in arts and crafts, using cubistic forms to create everyday objects. She was productively involved in the theatrical arts and created puppets with the face of a dynamic ‘sculpture-painting’, children’s picture books, decorative screens as well as ceramics. She was one of the first to introduce the stylistics of the new art into fashion and everyday design (designs for dresses, napkins, tablecloths etc.), thereby laying the foundations for ‘art deco’. Exter’s works created for A. Tairov’s Kamerniy Theatre marked a milestone in avant-garde scenography; she antedated the principles of constructive ‘biomechanics’, subjecting the actor’s body to the integrated, supra-personal rhythm of the performance. She spent most of her life teaching at her own studios in Kiev and Paris as well as the Paris Academy of Contemporary art and the studios of M. Franchetti.