Love in photos: Vladimir Mayakovsky and Lilya Brik

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The love story of Vladimir Mayakovsky and Lily Brik is a love triangle worthy of Hollywood retellings. True, without dramas and all the usual consequences of the wrong love.

Her first husband not only endorsed the love of the poet, but also shared her. “Volodya fell in love with me immediately and forever, just as Osya fell in love with Volodya,” Lily wrote in her memoirs. True, information about same-sex relationships has not been preserved – maybe the whole thing is in the conservative Soviet government, and maybe his love ended with genuine admiration.

For a long time they lived together, slept in one room and, of course, became one of the most discussed couples of the twentieth century. But let's go back to the very beginning.

With her first husband, Lily, then still Kagan, met in her youth. 17-year-old Osip headed a political economy circle that Lily attended. The next 7 years he cared for her, and in 1911, boldly told her parents: “I became a bridegroom. My bride, as you can guess, is Lily Kagan. ”

By that time, Osip had just graduated from the law faculty of Moscow University, and after the wedding, he got a job at his father’s coral sales firm. Lily accompanied him on trips around Siberia and Central Asia, until she became interested in literature and art.

In 1915, Lily turned their apartment into one of the main literary salons of the twentieth century. Poets, artists, and futurists appeared in the Briks' house, and Mayakovsky appeared one fine evening — his younger sister, Lily Elsa, led him.

On the evening of dating, Brick was flirting with Mayakovsky only out of politeness – she didn’t like ambitious and self-confident, and Mayakovsky, 22, was just that. But then, as Elsa wrote, “Briki irrevocably fell in love with his poems, and Mayakovsky irrevocably fell in love with Lily”.

A couple of days later, an arrogant poet came to the door of the Briks and asked to be taken to him. First he settled next door, and in 1919 he moved to them altogether.

Osip sympathized with the novel of his wife and asked only one thing: never to part with him. Mayakovsky was for him something more than just a poet, so that Lily's love did not require an explanation. Lily herself claimed that by that time her relationship with Osip had faded away, although she was still attached to him. “I loved, I love and I will love him more than my brother, more than my husband, more than my son. I did not read about such love in any verses, anywhere. I love him since childhood, he is inseparable from me. This love did not interfere with my love for Mayakovsky, ”Lily wrote.

Mayakovsky idolized Lilia (“Volodya did not just fall in love with me, he attacked me, it was an attack,” she wrote). The poet devoted to his beloved not only poems: he was ready to carry her bag in his mouth and brought the Renault car from Paris (in the post-revolutionary years!). Mayakovsky gave her a ring with the initials of LOVE – Lily Yurievna Brik. If you twist it around your finger, you get the word “love”. A truly poetic gesture. Lila, he dedicated all his works – except, of course, a poem about Lenin.

The love story ended with the life of the poet. In 1930, Mayakovsky was seriously ill, Briki left for Europe, and his career began to decline. In the suicide note, he bequeathed his entire creative heritage to Brikam, once again confessing his love to Lila. And shot himself in the head.

The love story came out just such, which is written in verse. Swift and passionate. True, neither Lilya, nor Osip, nor Vladimir were true to each other. But this did not prevent them from loving and living in harmony for more than 10 years.

Mayakovsky met with actresses from the Moscow Art Theater and Russian migrants in Paris and the United States, and everyone who crossed the threshold of her salon fell in love with Lily. Yves Saint Laurent called her his muse, and Pablo Picasso, Marc Chagall and Maya Plisetskaya were listed among friends. Lily was the muse of all Bohemian beginning of the twentieth century – from Paris to then Leningrad, and even the Soviet restrictions did not prevent her from doing so.

After her divorce from Osip and the death of Mayakovsky, she was married 2 more times. She died in 1978 after drinking too much of a sleeping pill. “I want to be a muse, not a burden,” Lily explained.

See also: Love in photos: Bruce Willis and Demi Moore


                                                            Vladimir Mayakovsky,
                                                            Lilya Brik

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