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At Calvary

Graphics, 1970, 27.6×36.7 cm

Description of the artwork «At Calvary»

This work has two names. Initially, the work was not signed, and in the booklet published in 2004 the author called it "At Calvary", but did not sign the sheet. Later, when he made an inventory of his graphic works, he signed it - "The Crucifixion".

The work was created in 1970. The dominance of socialist realism and related to the dominant system of themes glorifying it. Religion in the pen. And here the artist is concerned with the theme of the Christian faith, the suffering of Jesus Christ. How far from the surrounding reality all this is. But his "Christian" soul is looking for God and moves the man-artist to the same. This work became the idea for the work in oil created later.
On the left of the sheet is the head of the crucified Savior and part of the horizontal bar of the cross with a hand nailed to it. Streams of blood flowing down the face from under the blue-black crown of thorns, the leaden color of the skin emphasize the extreme physical exhaustion of the suffering Christ. The unusual angle of the image is such that it seems as if the crucified Jesus leaned forward, fixing his wide open eyes at something already beyond the bounds of earthly existence. Perhaps this is the last moment in the life of the Savior.
The fiery red sky and red tulips emphasize the special tension of the moment. The sky with the darkened sun and the coming darkness on the eve of the death of the crucified Christ is noted in the gospels. It would seem, what does tulips have to do with it, why did the author introduce them into the composition? Bright red flowers are like tongues of flame, into which the burning sky passes, the flame symbolizing the cleansing sacrifice made by the Savior for the sins of mankind. On the other hand, tulips are flowers of spring, the rebirth of nature, which means they indicate the Resurrection of Christ.
The work is expertly done with colored pencils. It can be seen that the artist is fluent in this technique both in the transfer of form and in the coloristic solution.
But still the main thing is the content. Now this work could be attributed to Christian art, but in 1970, of course, there was no such trend in Soviet art. In fact, VV Plastinin created this work "on the table", working as an underground artist
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About the artwork

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Art form: Graphics

Subject and objects: Religious scene

Style of art: Symbolism

Technique: Pencil

Materials: Paper

Date of creation: 1970

Size: 27.6×36.7 cm

Artwork in selections: 1 selection