Dmitrii Stakhievich Moor (birth surname Orlov) was born into the family of a mining engineer and did not receive formal artistic education. After moving to Moscow in 1898, and between 1902 and 1906, he actively participated in the city’s revolutionary movement, specifically taking part in the failed 1905 Revolution. While working at the Anatolii Mamontov printing shop, he submitted his drawings to periodicals. In 1908, he began to publish his cartoons in satirical journals, namely in Budil'nik [Alarm Clock]. While designing for Budil'nik, he adopted the pseudonym Moor deriving this name of the protagonist in Friedrich Schiller's play The Robbers (1781). During the early 1900s, Moor’s characteristic graphic style emerged. It was defined by a preference for black and white ink drawing, often punctuated with color accents. In 1910, Moor attended the studio of Petr Ivanovich Kelin, a Russian visual artist, but he never finished his studies. After the October Revolution of 1917, Moor worked as a graphic designer for such satirical magazines as Bezbozhnik u stanka [Atheist at the Workbench] (1923-1928), Krokodil [Crocodile] (from 1922), and at Daesh’ [Give] while creating caricatures for the leading Soviet newspaper Pravda. In 1918, he designed decorations for Moscow’s Red Square May Day festivities. Between 1919 and 1920, he produced posters for the Revvoensovet [Revolutionary Military Council]. Moor was famous for his revolutionary posters. His stark-looking poster Pomogi! [Help!] (1920) became a canonical image representing the plight of the starving Russian population during the Russian Civil War. From 1922 to 1930, Moor taught at VKhUTEMAS [Higher Art and Technical Studios] and from 1930 to 1932, he taught at the Moscow Polygraphic Institute. He joined the artistic association October in 1928, staying its member until the group disbanded in 1932. That year, he was awarded the title of Honored Worker of Arts of the Russian Soviet Federated Socialist Republic. From 1932 to 1941, Moor worked at Izogiz State Publishing House. During World War II, he was evacuated to Samarkand, Uzbekistan where he continued to produce posters, drawings, and illustrations for the war effort.
The 2nd State Typography Lithography Workshop was located in Moscow at 9 Trekhprudnyi Lane near the intersection of Mamonovskii Lane. The workshop occupied the former A.A. Levinson Partnership. Levenson's Moscow printing firm dates to 1887 when Aleksandr Aleksandrovich Levenson developed a plant with a speed press. His operation expanded to 450 workers by 1913 and at one point, his firm operated six of Moscow's eighteen high-speed presses. During World War I, Levinson's operation was subjugated under the Zemgorom (Chief Army Supply Committee of the All-Russian Union of Cities and Towns) for use during the war. During the Russian Revolution in 1917, the printing firm was nationalized. It was initially named the 2nd State Typography [Lithography] Workshop and then it was transferred (around 1920) to the MSNKh as the 16th State Printing Workshop.
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.