Date of Birth: 04/21/1861
Place of birth: Zhytomyr
Around Volyn lifetime seething passions: his adored and hated, praised and criticized, his books fiercely debated. The philosopher, literary critic, art historian, writer, baletoved - he had an incredible erudition, his education was so great that, according to the unanimous recognition of contemporaries, it is written all over it affected only a small, small part.
By nature and outlook Volyn was a staunch passeistom: in whatever area it may be invaded - criticism, theater, art, - he started with the revision of the ideas, calling back to the source, clear the existing forms of art from the later accretions. He searched everywhere the fundamental principle, and searched frantically. "He was able to work with such dedication with which the ancient hermits prayed," - wrote about him, Konstantin Fedin.
Akim Volynsky was a true man of the book: a passionate collector of books, genuine bibliophile and writer. As noted by Vadim Gajewski, "his poor furniture St. Petersburg apartment consisted mainly of bookcases and bookshelves. Ancient tomes, ledgers and solid volume surrounded this man, who was reading in all European languages ??and it seemed that absorbed almost the entire book wisdom. According to the type of culture it was the Russian lexicographer, and in appearance it remotely resembled the educated Florentine monk ... "
"He gave the impression of a good-natured person, not the big kid, not that" is letting the "good magician" - a view musicologist V. Bogdanov-Berezovsky.
And where did this "big kid - a good magician?" From the provincial Zhytomyr, where he was born April 21, 1861. From childhood he showed a rare aptitude for mathematics and languages, and later it will be called "a solid brain."
According to their data, he was enrolled in the law faculty of St. Petersburg University, and immediately on the grant that Jewish boys was unthinkable success. After graduation, he was offered to stay at the department of law, but Volyn refused: "I want to be a professor and a writer." By this time he changed his name to Flexer alias Akim Volynsky, just so he signed his first work "theological-political doctrine of Spinoza."
At the age of 18 Volyn was printed in the popular journal "North Gazette", which for ten years, until the closing of the magazine, led the "Literary Notes" section. But it was not just a literary review of new products, but also in-depth articles about the works of Tolstoy, Goncharov, Dostoyevsky and other masters of Russian literature. By the end of the XIX century finally took shape the views of Volyn, he "puts in front of all the inner spirit, the power of the soul, morality, free will." Proceeding from this idealistic position Volyn called populism leaders not to fight for social and political transformation of society and for a spiritual revolution, ie the first person to rebuild, and then society. Articles on the subject, collected in the book of Volyn "The struggle for idealism", were published in 1900. The book caused a sharp rejection of the right and left. Dissatisfied were liberals and conservatives. The same dissatisfaction caused Akim Volyn its attempt to revise the aesthetic views Belinsky, Dobrolyubov and Chernyshevsky.
Failed friendship Volyn and with the Symbolists, which he readily printed in the "Journal of the North." But as soon as he began to criticize them, then Merezhkovsky and Zinaida Gippius and Sologub, and others have turned away from him. His ally Volyn chose ... Leonardo da Vinci, which he wrote that extensive. For this work, Volyn was elected an honorary citizen of Milan, and his name was given a room in the library of Leonardo, where he gave his collection of materials about the great artist.
The search for the "new beauty" in art led Volyn theater. For some time he was in charge of the department in a repertory theater Drama Faith Komissarzhevskaya and significantly influenced the concept of productions "Hedda Gabler" and Ibsen`s "The Seagull" by Chekhov.
During the "wandering" in Greece and Italy, Volyn, writes his biographer Erich Hollerbach, "convinced, among other things, that the ancient theater is essentially - the ballet." Ballet became the latest fad Akim Volyn, he gave him his last 15 years of his life. The ritual dances of the Greeks, he saw a fundamental principle of the ballet, and made a desperate attempt to reconstruct the ritual meaning of certain ballet moves. His revolutionary ideas Volyn outlined in "The Book of rejoicing," which was published in 1925 edition of just 3000 copies. Not having received official recognition (again this "idealism" Volyn!), She received the unofficial status of a legendary book.
For Professionals "rejoicing Book" has become not only a reference book, but also a real feast of words. It Volyn surpassed himself in the language of luxury. Placer epithets and metaphors, a wonderful combination of words - it all looked like some kind of decorative oriental extravaganza. However, "The Book of rejoicing" very professional, most technology book.
Fiesta literary inspiration came to an end with the advent of the revolution, came the other times, and had to serve. Volyn department in charge of the Italian publishing house "World Literature", is a member of the Board of the House of Arts, chairman of the Petrograd branch of the Union of Writers, is a series of lectures "Russian Ballet School." We had to teach, and simply to make ends meet. Volyn was not easy to fit into the new world, its baroque rhetoric of the new generation perceived with difficulty. Nikolai Chukovsky (son of Corneille) Volyn remembered: "He wrote flowery and lush, and the pyshnoslovii, to tell the truth, and the whole point of his articles. There were also "Dionysism" and "maenads" and "lotus" and "flute Marcia" and "the deep at the top and the depth at the bottom" - all that verbiage, which was used by the authors of articles in the magazine "Golden Fleece".
It remains a bitter chuckle: n-da ... "set of words." No, it was not a "set of words" and the culture of the past, which was not necessary in the Soviet republic, where demand had other "kits" such as "Your word, Comrade Mauser!" The workers and peasants Volyn was alien to him, "blew dry heat desert, "as Boris Eichenbaum. Time "maenads" and "Lotus" has passed. It took time and Akim Volyn, he died July 6, 1926 in Leningrad, at the age of 65 years. Luckily, before they reach the political processes and executions writers.
And the final touch of romance and privacy idealist Volyn. This is - his strange long affair with Zinaida Gippius. Here are excerpts from a letter from Gippius February 28, 1895: "Do you ever have been so gentle, so gentle, such a warning, delicate, nice, especially nice and gave me hope for the mysterious infinite? Alas, I am! Now you - demanding and familiarity, like after a year of marriage. You love me - of course! But love without rush and terror, everything in its place, love must flow through the channel moral, not exceeding the shores of morality ... "Zinaida Gippius demanded Akim Volyn" miracles of love "feats in the name of love, and he for some reason evaded them (afraid of? wanted? could not?). As a result, these relations have become a "comedy of love." Poor Akim L. ... No luck in love. But lucky in the history of literature and art. There he is - a giant.