July 5, 2003, the 100th birthday anniversary of Vladimir Grigor'evich Suteev - the children writer, painter, founder of our country's animated cartoon, Honoured artist of the RSFSR, is celebrated.
He was born in a physician's family, in Moscow. He had taken after his father, a talented man, who was also fond of art.
Since he was a youth, Vladimir Suteev had been periodically published in "Pioner", "Murzilka", "Druzhnyje rebjata", "Iskorka" magazines, in "Pionerskaja pravda" newspaper. Since 1947 he had been working in the "Detgiz" - publishing-house.
While illustrating books, he borrowed a lot from the animated cartoon; his dynamic drawings, sometimes successfully substituting text, look like the cartoon stills, his characters possess their own graphic individuality, expressed by their mobile features and motion.
V.G. Suteev has come to the literature for children from the cinema. He graduated from the Institute of Cinematography (1928), being a student, he had made the drawings for the first animated film "China on fire" (1924); shot the first talking animated cartoon "The crossing street" (1931); worked at the "Sojuzmul'tfil'm"-film studio, where more than 30 films had been shot. Some of them ("Petja and Krasnaja Shapochka", "Volshebnyj magazin", "As the New Year trees are being lighted up", etc.) were rewarded with international prizes. In 1941, before going to the army, Vladimir Grigor'evich completed his work on the "Muha-cokotuha"-cartoon, based on K. Chukovskij's fairy-tale.
In 1952 in "Detgiz" his first book was published, "Two tales about the Pencil and the Paints", in which Vladimir Grigor'evich Suteev showed himself to be a writer, as well as a painter. The book was welcomed with the K. Chukovskij's review in "Literaturnaja gazeta".
Since then quite a number of Suteev's books have been published: "What kind of a bird is this?", "Under the mushroom", "The bag of apples", "The Chicken and the Duckling", "Who said "mew"?", "The helpful stick", as well as many others. His entertaining books let children learn the basic information of their environment. The ingenious Hedgehog's common stick turns into "the helpful stick-a friend in need". And all this is demonstrated through the pictures. Since the very first one their playing nature has been evident (the Pencil, in order to be rescued from the greedy Mouse, is drawing a Cat). His books are always over-witty, thus helping to explain to a child the simple truths of life without moralizing.
V.G. Suteev had been illustrating the books of our literary classics: K. Chukovskij's tales, S. Marshak's "Whiskers and stripes", "Uncle Stjopa" by S. Mihalkov, "The merry summer" by V. Berestov.
Illustrated with the painter's drawings, the below-mentioned books were published in our country for the first time: G. Rodari's "Cippolino's adventures" (Suteev's heroes of the fairy-tale have become specimens for toys), the Norvegian writer A. Preisen's "Happy New Year", the English writer L. Moor's "Little raccoon and the Thing in the pool". Suteev's Pif-puppy has become a favourite of children throughout the world ("The adventures of Pif", retold from French).
Children all over the world know the witty, merry and kind books of V.G. Suteev. They have been translated into 36 languages and published in Norway, France, Mexico, Czechoslovakia and Japan.
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