Suprematism (Two-Dimensional Self-Portrait)
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In this “two-dimensional self-portrait”, Malevich has depicted himself using only five squares and a circle. Malevich’s aim in abstraction, as he explained in his 1927 publication ‘The Non-Objective World’ was to “free art from the dead weight of the real world”, rejecting real-life forms, and to take “refuge in the form of the square”. The goal of reducing form down to flat colour and simple shape was to strip an image back to its purest feeling and perception. It isn’t clear which shape is representing which feature in his self-portrait, or whether they directly “represent” anything at all. The artist believes that this composition has encapsulated the sense of self normally captured in a traditional self-portrait.