Although known for his characterizations and posters that he signed with the pseudonym 'Deni'; Viktor Nikolayevich Denisov never received formal artistic education. Around 1906, Deni began exhibiting at the annual exhibitions of the Society of Independents in Saint Petersburg, as well as at the Salon of Humorists. In 1910, he took private lessons in painting and drawing from the artist-portraitist Nikolai P. Ulianov and that same year, he became active in the field of political caricature, contributing satirical drawings to such journals as Budil'nik [Alarm Clock], Satiricon, Solntse Rossii [Russian Sun], Pulemet [Machine Gun], Knut [Whip], while contributing to the newspaper Golos Moskvy [Voice of Moscow]. After the October Revolution of 1917, Deni worked for Litizdat (State Publishing House). During the early post-Revolutionary period, he lived in Kazan' and produced his first posters there while continuing to work on political caricatures for a myriad of Soviet journals. Upon his return to Moscow in 1920, he contributed to the ROSTA (Russian Telegraph Agency) Windows studio creating posters for the collective. By 1921, his caricatures appeared in newspapers, including the main Soviet news organ Pravda [Truth]. His posters were included in a number of high-profile exhibitions such as Krasnaia armia [Red Army] (1923) and Raboty na revoliutsionnye i sovetskie temy [Works of Revolutionary and Soviet Themes] (1930). He also exhibited works at international fairs in Berlin, Hamburg, Vienna, and Amsterdam, and he was an exhibitor at the International Poster Exhibition in Liege (1932). In 1932, Deni was awarded the title of Honored Worker of the Arts of the Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic.
Before nationalization, the 5th State Typolithography Workshop in Moscow was Russian Partnership Printing House on Krivoarbatskii (curved) lane. The 5th Lithography was placed under the Mosoblpoligraf printing trust. It is not to be confused with the 5th Typography Workshop that was also in Moscow during the same period. Krivoarbatskii Lane became Melnikov Lane (for architect Konstantin Melnikov who lived at number 10) and in 1936, it became Zhukov Street in honor of engineer Nikolai Zhkovskii who lived at house number 8. In 1991, the street reverted to Krivoarbatskii.
The State Publishing House had its origins in Imperial Russia as the Royal Print Yard in St. Petersburg. The Soviets nationalized the print yard in 1917 and requisitioned its presses. From requisitioning emerged the Publishing House of the Petrograd Soviet, formed in the winter of 1917 by the Literary and Publishing Department of People's Commissariat for Education. As the Red Army controlled more provinces and cities in former Imperial Russia, the State Publishing House developed offices outside St. Petersburg. For example in May 1919, the All-Russian Central Executive Committee created the State Publishing House of the RSFSR (Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic) in Moscow. Publishing offices were later created elsewhere around Soviet Russia as well as in outlying republics.