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Autumn day. Sokolniki

Painting, 1879, 63.5×50 cm

Description of the artwork «Autumn day. Sokolniki»

Recognition of the 19-year-old Isaac Levitan as an artist began with painting "Autumn day. Sokolniki". Immediately after the student exhibition in 1880 it was acquired for his gallery Pavel Tretyakov but young Sam Levitan could not believe in its success: too much by the time he was – a Jew, an orphan, almost a beggar – had to endure. Sadness and loneliness will penetrate and autumn landscape.

The 1879-year, when he wrote "Autumn day. Sokolniki", in Moscow forbade Jews to live. The persecution was connected with the attempt of the people Soloviev, Alexander II, and the Imperial administration was particularly zealous with the expulsion of "unreliable". A student of the Moscow school of painting, sculpture and architecture, Levitan, along with his brother Abel and sister Teresa was forced to leave Moscow and settle in the suburban area of Saltykovka, and later move to located outside the city of Moscow.

The morning restless Levitan left to wander in Sokolniki Park. Listened to the noise of the wind, bending the trees to one side, peered, trying to catch, like a cold change of paint. Even 300-400 years ago on the site of the Park was thick and dense forest, extending far to the North. In the sixteenth century there loved to hunt Ivan the terrible, in the seventeenth – fanatical lover of hounds and falconry (hence the name Sokolniki) hunting Alexei Mikhailovich, the father of Peter I. Levitan, and he was an avid hunter, could disappear in the woods for several days, eating some berries. One friend even asked the police: Levitan disappeared! And it was after three and a half days – even more emaciated, with sunken cheeks and the only dead duck. Alone with nature Levitan, painfully vulnerable, gentle and nervous, with difficulty, but still found composure. But in those autumn days of 1879 he took with him not the gun, and sketchbook: late reporting student exhibition, Levitan still had nothing to show.

High sky with pieces of clouds in Sokolniki not threatened by bad weather, but not promised sun. Gusts of wind tried to scatter some yellow leaves on the maple trees along the Avenue. And behind them, dark emerald, and far higher, reaching for the sky and old pine trees. They seem to inspire small trees: you planted in the spring by human hands, there are only temporary guests, but we are ancient and eternal. Even zeleneva grass interspersed with withered leaves made a strange impression, as the coexistence of a number of life with death. Levitan performed studies, wrote Buffy stretching into the distance the path of the Park, shifting the perspective vanishing point left, and was glad: it seems to show he will be painting and lyrical landscape, the whole value of which is not in the photographic "resemblance", but in the strength of emotion conveyed, as taught by his beloved mentor Alexey Savrasov.

Where in the landscape the woman?


After ten days, entirely given seized his landscape, Levitan, as always, the morning came to Sokolniki, and did not recognise them: in the night from frost circled all the leaves and branches and pine needles covered with frost. The air and the ratio of the colors completely changed. Levitan was relieved: it's good that he managed to finish his landscape, the latest modifications can be made and indoors, from memory. And in the evening to him at the light he looked fellow College Nicholas Chekhov, the elder brother of the future writer. "I think the alley would not hurt to let the beautiful lonely woman in a black dress!" - could not resist the Council is not very unicavi all these lyrical landscape "sentimentalizing" Nicholas.

Perhaps we can even imagine what spurs of Nikolai Chekhov on this intervention. At a traveling exhibition in 1879 considerable success enjoyed "Babushkin sad"and "Overgrown pond" another favorite teacher Levitan, Vasily Polenov. And that, in other works landscape enlivened by small female figures. And, maybe, does moonlighting as a coffee caricatures, inevitably groblewski taste, Nicholas had completely forgotten how to perceive everything, which is devoid of human presence. In the end, the romantic "woman in black" could be the subject of his personal lyrical dreams: just like you can see on one of the few paintings of Nikolai Chekhov "A young widow on her husband's grave".

But, whatever it was, and at that moment not to end self-confident Levitan conceded. The female figure on his completed painting finished Nikolai Chekhov. He was pleased with himself and insisted that only through a woman and can understand that the theme of the landscape of rootlessness and loneliness.

"Autumn day. Sokolniki" on a fateful exhibition


The School "Autumn day" like. Its picturesque surface, dotted with different fractional strokes, by itself, without female figures, evokes emotions, awakened the alarm. For the exhibition, which was waiting for "all of Moscow", the picture is allocated in the old building on Myasnitskaya a single wall. And light, importantly, also proved to be beneficial for landscape. From Levitan's excitement completely disagreed with nerves and trembling hands. Besides him, a few years took place in only a plaid jacket and short pants, had to go to a meeting with potential customers. So he thought he could take his coat rent in fancy Barber shop a Film Petukhov, and for a long time rummaging among the boyars coats and jackets operetta grandees, trying to find anything remotely suitable. And it is also in the feverish excitement head Levitan added to the unreality of what is happening.

The exhibition was both Chekhov Nikolay – to share possible success, and Anton began to study at Moscow medicine, to support completely rasslaivateisa Levitan. Tretyakov asked the author to assign his picture of the price and "not to Goritsa". Levitan, then absolutely do not represent the prices on the art market and not really believing that his painting found a buyer – and how! – flatly refused. And almost fled, unable to cope with the emotions. Tretyakov insisted that he, allegedly, never sets the price for the paintings himself, and Levitan it's time to learn to sell yourself. In a good, commercial sense. But, seeing the confusion of the artist relented: okay de, ask them to put a price on your professors, they prices for paintings to put can.

Almost last, much too late, the exhibition was Alexei Kondratyevich Savrasov. Favorite teacher Levitan, the finest landscape painter and already hopelessly drinker, he was, as usual, straight and half-drunk. Having given away hanging on the walls landscapes terms like "Rubbish!" and "This daubs just a tub of pickles to cover Savrasov got to the painting "Autumn day. Sokolniki". "Where Is Isaac? – sounded roared Savrasov. – What the hell unnecessary woman punched in the scenery?" The intuition and taste Savrasov, Levitan was trusted implicitly. More than myself – Yes, and he did not intend to include figure in landscape, in his vision of the landscape of teacher and student match. Further, with rare exceptions, the people in the landscapes Levitan will not. And the painting "Autumn day. Sokolniki" will allow the beginning artist to believe in themselves and (at least for a short time) will correct his deplorable financial situation.

Author: Anna Yesterday
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About the artwork

Art form: Painting

Subject and objects: Landscape

Style of art: Realism

Technique: Oil

Materials: Canvas

Date of creation: 1879

Size: 63.5×50 cm

Artwork in selections: 51 selections

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