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Vasily
Nikolaevich Yakovlev

Russia 
1893−1953
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Biography and information

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[2(14). 1. 1893, Moscow - 29.6.1953, ibid].

Soviet painter, people's artist of the RSFSR (1943), member AH the USSR (1947).

He studied at the Moscow school of painting, sculpture and architecture (1914-17) at the K. Korovin, S. V. Malyutin and others.

He taught in VKhUTEMAS (1918-22), at the Architectural Institute (1934-36), and the Moscow art Institute. V. I. Surikov (1948-50).

A member of AHRR (1922). Chief artist VSHV (1938-39, 1949-50). Head of the restoration workshop of the Museum of fine arts. A. S. Pushkin (1926-31).

Author thematic paintings, showing the life and work of the Soviet people, portraits ("hero of the Soviet Union V. N. Yakovlev", 1941; "Partisans", 1941-42, both the USSR State prize, 1943, "Collective herd", 1948, USSR State prize, 1949, all - the Tretyakov gallery, Moscow). Brushwork Ya, based on the study of art of the 17th century, characterized by the weight of the forms, "Museum" color, especially in still lifes ("Fish of the Barents sea", 1931, private collection, Moscow).

Awarded the order of Lenin and medals.

Born in Moscow 2 (14) January 1893 in the family of a pharmacist. From 1911 he studied at the physico-mathematical faculty of Moscow University, simultaneously (1913-1914) visiting the Studio of V. N. Meshkov. In 1914-1917 worked in the School of painting, sculpture and architecture, in particular from A. E. Arkhipov and K. A. Korovin. Was an active member of AHRR. In 1932-1933, at the invitation of Gorky visited Italy. He lived in Moscow.

I enthusiastically read old Italian, Dutch and Flemish masters, helped by his vast experience of the Museum restorer (worked in the Central restoration workshops, 1924-1927, and in 1926-1931 was in charge of the relevant workshop of the Museum of fine arts). Being a "militant realist" attuned to the art avant-garde negatively, opposed him the way based on the detailed simulation of the picturesque classics. So, the images of Renaissance and Baroque combined with impressions of travel or creative modern artistic life – was translated into a series of beautiful Fish in the Barents sea (1931-1934) pictures Orgy (1934), Miners write the great Creator of the Constitution (1937), the Argument about art (1946; all three works – the Russian Museum), the Collective herd (1948, Museum of fine arts, Orenburg; Stalin prize, 1949), Return from the hunt (1948, Tretyakov gallery) and others, all of them have naturmorte meticulous detail subject and body textures sometimes finding (as in the mock-erotic Orgy with portraits of fellow artists, or heated Dispute about art that happens in the Studio, cluttered with Antiques) are almost surreal hue. Often played as a parlor wing portrait (Harpist V. G. Dulova, 1934, private collection, Moscow; etc.) and master of landscape "in the ancient taste" (Sorrento, 1933).

In 1938-1939 and 1949-1950 he served as chief artist of the all-Union agricultural exhibition. Cemented his high official status of heroic portraits of the Second world war (hero of the Soviet Union V. N. Yakovlev, 1941; Partisan, 1942; both portraits in the Tretyakov gallery; Stalin prize, 1943). However, his equestrian portrait of Marshal Zhukov – amid the flaming ruins of Berlin (1945-1946, the Museum of the siege of Leningrad) – was too pathetic, as if to impinge on the authority of the Generalissimo, and was banned for showing. Master actively, and acted as a teacher (he taught from 1918 Free art workshops, the Institute named after V. I. Surikov and other schools). Turned to literature, writing in the 1930-ies autobiographical story of Frol Skopin (published in his posthumous sketch book, My calling, 1963). However, all of his books (On art, 1951; On great Russian artists, 1952; Artists, restorers, antique dealers, 1966) were too starry-eyed and autozentrum. The last major work of Yakovlev was a guide (together with P. P. Sokolov-Skal) restoration of the Sevastopol panorama FA Roubaud (since 1952). He died in Moscow.

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