Golosov, Il’ia (1883–1945) By Vronskaya, Alla G.
Il’ia Aleksandrovich Golosov, one of the leading Soviet modernist architects of the 1920s, was born in Moscow into the family of a priest and was the brother of architect Panteleimon Aleksandrovich Golosov (1882–1945). Alongside his brother, Il’ia Golosov graduated from Moscow Stroganov Art and Industry School in 1907 and from the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture in 1912, having received an architectural degree. His first projects were private villas in various historical styles.
In 1919 Golosov became close to the members of the cubo-futurist group Zhivskul’ptrarkh (an agglutination referring to Painting, Sculpture, Architecture), in particular architect Nikolai Ladovskii, sculptor Boris Korolev, and painter Nikolai Istselenov, who together with Golosov became members of the Sculpture Artel (Co-operative) of the Second Independent State Art Studios (soon to become famous as VKhUTEMAS) under the leadership of Korolev. Golosov’s early connection with Cubo-Futurism and sculpture had predicated his design principles and his formal vision of architecture. This sculptural attitude to architecture was manifested, in particular, in Golosov’s “theory of design of architectural organisms”: he interpreted architecture as a “mass” (according to formalist aesthetics, a quintessentially sculptural property), or, in other words, as a large-scale form.