Entered the history of Russian art as a talented master of historical genre and a subtle chronicler of contemporary peasant life. Born in the village stanichnaya Sloboda, Tambov province. The father and elder brother were engaged in iconography, and the future artist helped them in their work. At fourteen the boy became an orphan and stayed with his elder brother, who inherited the profession of his father. The case helped Ryabushkina to become an artist: his ability to notice who stayed in the village a student of the Moscow school of painting, sculpture and architecture A. X. Transfiguration. He took the boy to Moscow, he was sent to School and took a most ardent interest in his life.
The first works Ryabushkin made in School -"pirate Attack", "Shrovetide festivities" (1881, RM), "Summer evening in the village" (1881, RM), etc. - testified to the artist's interest in subjects connected with the life of a Russian village. Most independent work was the "Peasant wedding in the Tambov province" (1880, TG). In this picture I felt the traits of the personality of the artist: subtle observation, restraint and softness in the transmission of feelings, good-natured, indulgent irony.
Ryabushkin has not graduated from the Moscow school. After the death of his teacher Vasily Perov he went to St. Petersburg and in 1882 entered the Academy of fine arts. A big role in his serious training played a teacher of natural class of p. P. Chistyakov. The picturesque sketch artist "Sitter" (1887, the Scientific research Museum of the Academy of fine arts) was as one of the best examples left in the Academy. In these years a lot of bands working on the implementation of the academic programs on the subjects of biblical stories, classical mythology and Roman history.
Professor of the Academy celebrated the bravery and innovation of the young artist, the ability to achieve vital truth and persuasiveness of the composition, the naturalness in the image of people. At the same time Ryabushkin enjoys creating illustrations for the popular magazine "world illustration" and "Niva".
Thesis Ryabushkin devotes to the religious theme of "the descent from the cross" (1890, TG). Working on it, the artist lost interest in the original sketch, approved by the Council of the Academy, and without fear of consequences, a month before the end of the period wrote a new song. In the result of violation of the contest rules he was deprived of a Large gold medal.
In 1890, after graduating from the Academy of fine arts, Ryabushkin fulfilling its dream - travel around the ancient cities of Russia. He was attracted by the monuments of ancient architecture, paintings. In museums he studied Antiques: textiles, household utensils, costumes, weapons. The artist was sincerely passionate about reading historical literature, Chronicles and folk tales. Soon Ryabushkin settled near St. Petersburg, near Luban, the estate of his friend I. F. tyumenev, and in 1901 moved to the estate Didino that belonged to his close friend V. Belyaev. Designed by the artist for it was built a workshop with a small apartment building. It is quiet and almost without a break, doing music and painting, and the artist lived. First advisers and friends, toughest critics of his work were peasants, from whom he constantly visited at weddings, christenings and family celebrations. The village Ryabushkin is obliged to create his best works: it nurtured his art, gave an inexhaustible material for a life of creativity.
In 1891, for the first time at the exhibition Peredvizhniki bands exhibited the painting "Waiting for the newlyweds from the wedding in the Novgorod province" (1891, RM). According to the recollections of friends, the story originated from the artist's personal impressions after he visited one of the peasant weddings. In the picture given one of the solemn moments of the expectations of newlyweds, when the silence stiffened, sitting on the benches for guests, relatives, matchmaker, girlfriend... With surprising simplicity and restraint shown Ryabushkina various shades of human emotions.
The artist admires his heroes, he was close to them moral integrity, dignity. The immediacy of image, the vitality of the characters make the picture a typical product of the 90-ies of the XIX century.
Travel Ryabushkin to his native country, a serious passion for Russian history, folk epic caused him to have interest in the historical genre. In 1892, he paints a picture "Funny Peter I in the wheels" (TG). The artist turned to the Petrine era, archers clash of the old troops and the new soldiers of Peter I - amusing. But in the image Ryabushkina internal conflict became peaceful, everyday character. The artist was never drawn to dramatic, full of tension of the situation. Originality, uniqueness of approach Ryabushkin to historical themes I did the artist's friends. Ilya Repin wrote that the painting "moves" the viewer into a distant era... "So all of a sudden, not iScan and truthfully is a good thing!" V. V. Stasov noted that Ryabushkin "there are some quite its own peculiar originality, some kind of a fresh, original look..."
In 1893 Ryabushkin created the painting "the Seat of Tsar Mikhail Fedorovich with the boyars in his state room" (TG). The artist rendered with subtle biting irony Prim importance and boredom that prevails at these "seats." It seems that the seated mannequins in the boyar robes, with indifferent, apathetic faces discussing the Affairs of state. In this painting, the artist first came to a different, a completely unique color scheme of the canvas. Previously, he above all sought to follow nature, now he puts another, not less important task - through a common system of colorful fabric to reveal the "spirit of history".
In the 90 years the artist has performed a lot of custom work, drawings and watercolors for various publications and albums, sketches of compositions intended for painting of St. Sophia Cathedral in Novgorod. Large historical picture of these years was the "Moscow street XVII century" (1896, RM).
Choosing an ordinary episode in the life of Moscow XVII century, the artist has managed to recreate the ancient times, as it opened the page of Russian history. Before the audience comes alive typical corner of old Moscow with low wooden and stone buildings, impassable mud. On the street, high floors choosing the clothes, people go. A young woman in a white shawl, a red dress carefully stepping on a log footbridge, the Lord is seated on a black horse, the beggar, sitting before the icon, asking for alms... this artist is not seen in many provincial cities of Russia, and therefore could with such vividness, naturalness to imagine this scene on the canvas.
A large role in the work allotted to the landscape. Cold autumn day, dark clouds and the thinning foliage of the trees bring a sad note to the General mood. Clearly feel the attitude of the artist to portray the subtle, good-natured and slightly ironic. And yet he admires originality, naive simplicity, elegance and beauty of this life. In addressing the decorative leaf bands comes from the tradition of Russian icon painting and fresco paintings. He does not seek the illusory transfer of items. Painting it different density, local spots, decorative clarity. Found an artist painting system became his new creative discovery, the result of creative thinking, task historical and domestic genre.
Interest in the epoch of the XVII century, put it Ryabushkina in the plan to create a series of historical paintings-portraits, which would have been sealed types that represent different layers of society at that time. The artist managed to write only "Family merchant" (1897, RM). The portrait is the static nature of the composition, the stillness of the figures. The artist has shown them not idealizing and Sharira.
Not satisfied with the first option, aiming for the unity of the artistic interpretation of the whole work, Ryabushkin reworked and changed him, strengthening humanistic basis, making it more lively and lovely images of the girls.
In 1899 Ryabushkin have graduated from one of the most beloved paintings "Russian women of the XVII century in the Church" (TG). The artist showed an extraordinary sense of decoration, the ability to create a complete color ensemble of colorful clothes of women and bright murals of the interior. Smooth and melodious rhythm, a rare sonority of colors, light harmony of the picture is perceived as old melodious song. A fine, delicate painting recalls the ancient Yaroslavl frescoes, and precious enamel, and vintage miniatures. Paintings by Ryabushkin "Russian women of the XVII century in Church" and "the merchant Family" were awarded honorary diplomas at the International exhibition in Paris.
In 1901, written by one of the best paintings "the Wedding train in Moscow" (state Tretyakov gallery). On the canvas once again comes to life far Moscow of the XVII century. Fast moving noisy colorful procession. In the foreground of the painting, against the dark grey of the barn, stands the elegant figure of a sad young girl, seeking to get away from the lush and joyful celebration. Many artists did not finish, giving everyone the opportunity to perceive the picture differently. With extraordinary subtlety transferred to the landscape - quiet, thoughtful, imbued with the last rays of the setting spring sun. Some places of the canvas is barely touched by the brush, some of the detail remained in podmalevka, and the artist himself considered this work unfinished, but still the picture is perceived integral, emotional, expressive.
In the last years of his life Ryabushkin enjoys creating illustrations for Russian folk tales, drawn to rural subjects, writes of the work: "water" (1898), "In the village" (1902, private collection), "the Inside guy in the dance..." (1902, TG), "In the village. To Church" (1903, TG). Views on the modern village and the attitude reflected in one of the late works of the artist "Tea party" (1903, private collection, Moscow). There are no former poetizatsii Russian village life. This work is in the strength and severity of the psychological characteristics may only be placed next to the picture S. Korovin "In the world".
In recent years Ryabushkin was seriously ill (tuberculosis of the lungs). The doctors advised me to go to Switzerland, where he in 1903 and went. But the trip proved fruitless. After returning home, Devino, the artist, surrounded by friends, died in his .workshop may 10, 1904. Russian art has lost a great, original, truly national artist.
Materials from the book: Dmitrienko, A. F., Kuznetsova E. V., Petrov O. F., Fedorova N.. 50 brief biographies of masters of Russian art. Leningrad, 1971