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Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy
 Nikolayevich Kramskoy
Russia 1837−1887
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Biography and information
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy (May 27 (June 8), 1837, Ostrogozhsk, Voronezh province — March 24 (5 April) 1887, St. Petersburg) — Russian painter (master of portrait and genre paintings) and art-activist: Kramskoy was the leader of the Rebellion 14, the founder of the Artel of artists, he is one of the founders and ideologist of the Association of traveling exhibitions.

Features of the artist Ivan Kramskoy:simple and clear composition of the paintings; deep psychologism and perfect resemblance of the portraits, the ability to find "the meaning of the faces" of the model, as he said himself archaeology; the strict and restrained emotions of the characters — even in the dramatic genre works.

Famous paintings of Ivan Kramskoy: "Unknown", "Christ in desert", "Portrait Of Mina Moiseyev","Inconsolable grief","Moonlit night","Mermaid"portraits Shishkin, Tolstoy, Nekrasovand others.

Life Kramskoy seems to cram it into the framework of ideology, in which it will not fit. He was able to indicate the way for many others, but I found your? I would like to respond positively, but I think this possibility Ivan Kramskoy we have left.

"Yes, but"

Almost every "Yes" to a future of archaeology, is the "but" to refute the meaning of the previous statements. He was a fighter with the academic, frozen subversive rules, a visionary, inspirer and organizer of the famous "Revolt of fourteen", then artists ' Union, and later of the Society of traveling exhibitions. It seems that the "ideological content" of this figure quite clearly. But a closer look finds many contradictions. He left the Academy, but he was awarded the title of academician, and a professorship was offered — refused. He built his life "in the Covenant" of Chernyshevsky, but he wrote some great portraits of members of the Royal family (1, 2). The meaning of the art he saw in search the purpose of human existence, in solving social and community problems, but his most famous painting, ironically, was "Unknown".

It is believed (not without reason) that the maximum Kramskoy showed his talent in the virtuoso writing of portraits. Here will not do without "but". He is very weary of the need to paint portraits, considered them a burden, a bondage, the task of which is to enable a family to provide for, and dreamed about how to give your hand a serious, "real" art.

On the outskirts of painting

To work with portraits of Kramskoy began even earlier than with the actual painting to be the case. At that time photography was just gaining popularity, and without retouching not treated, in this direction and took the first steps Ivan. From the small town of Ostrogozhsk helped him to escape in case the person visiting the Kharkov photographer. The boy was with him as a Retoucher and watercolorist. Before that he had graduated with honors from the Ostrogozhsk school and a little learned to draw from a local iconographer.

Twenty years of archaeology when he was in Petersburg, and stayed there. Not in the least embarrassed, went straight to the Imperial Academy of arts. The first time passed the exams and was admitted. Maybe not so bad in the Academy was, once a commoner without a penny in your pocket could come in off the street and do? However, the food Kramskoy think very necessary, and here occurred the way the photo editing skills. It took one of the first Russian shop former graduate of the Academy of arts Andrew Denyer. Had been in the hands of archaeology photographs, seemed to begin to glow. Very soon he was known as "the God of retouching". Yes, portraits of Kramskoy was not released already. "Write only portraits, today, tomorrow, etc., from year to year, and not see the output — this can act depressingly on talent. From this position I’m tired…"— later says the artist. The researchers calculated that he wrote about 3 thousand heads.

Riot 14, the Artel of artists and the Association of traveling exhibitions

Kramskoy taught in the Society for the encouragement of arts, and the teacher left a good memory, and grateful students. Ilya Repinuntil the end of his days spoke of him with great respect and love and listened to his comments. Organizational skills Ivan Kramskoy had a great. He announced the Council of the Academy, the refusal of 14 talented graduates to take part in the competition for a gold medal. The medal was meant for the winner of a six-year stay in Italy on a full pension institutions. The rest of the participants was guaranteed a profitable place. Young ambitious artists did not want to describe the mythological story on a given theme "the Feast in Valhalla" (in Norse mythology). Offended by ignoring their demands and inspired by the new democratic trends, rebels under the leadership of Ivan Kramskoi left the Academy and formed an independent co-operative of artists. It lasted eight years, although he Kramskoy believed that the heyday was reached in the fifth year, then the case inevitably drew to decline.

Artel was created on the basis of the commune (clearly manifest the influence of the novel Chernyshevsky "What to do?"). However, in reality I had to face a lot of domestic troubles. Successful painters did not want to give part of their income into a common Fund, cohabitation also resulted in many domestic clashes, the wives of the artists quarreled first. And the fact that many continued to somehow co-operate with the Academy, Kramskoy at the time it seemed a betrayal. He did not know that in the future, the betrayal of colleagues will blame him. The gang all turned out to be less similar to an ideal community, which he dreamed of archaeology. In 1870, he left her and soon a co-operative of artists broke up. Inspired by the ideas Myasoedova, Kramskoy was one of the organizers of the Society of traveling exhibitions, which had a huge impact on the development of the picturesque movement in Russia.

The incarnate dream of Vera Pavlovna

Sofya Prokhorova cohabited with a certain painter Popov, quite happily married, not on her. Kramskoy was 22 years old when they met. This story is also easy to discern echoes of the influence of Chernyshevsky and the image of Vera Pavlovna. Soon the priests with the lawful wife went abroad, and archaeology offered the woman a hand — and a helping hand, and marriage. So Sofya Prokhorova became Sophia Kramskaya. In the Artel of artists she was in charge of domestic issues. Was always beside her husband, bore him six children, four of whom died. Whether Kramskoy happy? Definitely Yes, although it was recognized that "happiness fills life".

Sudden "Unknown" and portrait curse

Adhering to democratic ideology, proclaiming the ideology of art, archaeology in his paintings is not really reflected. In his sincerity, no doubt (again, "Yes, but"). At the 11th exhibition of the Peredvizhniki, Repin showed his "The procession"the encyclopedia of Russian life. Makovskydepicted the urban poor in "Date."and "Reprimand", Surikov wrote disgraced Menshikov in exile. And what about archaeology? But as a General here wormed this magnificent lady?

If archaeology was not among the founders of the Artel of artists and the Association of traveling exhibitions, if it was not known for his democratic views, if not for his scandalous marriage to a "fallen woman", had a chance this picture to be in the traveling exhibition? However, despite the "reliability" of archaeology, the picture caused a storm of indignation among his comrades. "A courtesan in a carriage"— said, as cut, critic Vladimir Stasov. The biggest mystery of archaeology, to reveal that until the end will fail — the name says. But looking at it — and from "Unknown" does not want to look away — no, no, Yes, and think: what would wrote Kramskoy, if not for the need to earn their daily bread and not ideology, which he sought to cram his life?

The more popular archaeology became, the louder was heard the blasphemy comrades. And when he ordered portraits of members of the Royal family… Kramskoy called the apostate, zabrodivshie Academy (he proposed to consider options for cooperation "academics" and the Wanderers), a renegade, a traitor to the ideals steeped in luxury. Even his favorite red stockings reproach put! The execution of portraits of Royal personages indeed allowed his family to reach a higher standard of living. But did the artist himself for a moment to relax? Not at all. It seemed, he found himself in a vicious circle, and all she can do is run away even faster. The money goes, the needs of the family increases, the ability to write is necessary and desirable to engage in archaeology sees. In despair he writes Pavel Tretyakov: "The thing I have came to pain, and I’m ready to shout "help." Give me a year of life on trial. I want a year of artistic life, not to be forced to run for bread. Think, business suffers, although I’m already exhausted". But the coveted "year of life" he did not received.

He did not live two months to 50 years, but looked at the end of life of a feeble old man, with bitterness admitted that from it all turned away, and to do what he was born, he failed. He suffered from heart disease in old age (under 50 years old, "old age"!) large quantities had to take morphine continued the portrait session, working for 5−6 hours without a break. Grigory Myasoedov ruthlessly describes the situation thus: the family are accustomed to luxury, the money went without an account, children required more and more, and eventually Kramskoy "we need money and money need to work, you need to vpryskivat morphine, you have to die…". He died, and did not finish the last portrait in my life. Ironically, he posed a well-known physician Carl Rauhfus. At five o’clock in the archaeology of staggered. Soon it was all over, and even the proximity of the doctor could do nothing to help.

Author: Alain Esaulova
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Artworks by the artist
total 185 artworks
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy. Unknown
1883, 75.5×99 cm
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy. N. A. Nekrasov in the period of "Last songs"
N. A. Nekrasov in the period of "Last songs"
1879, 105×89 cm
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy. Christ in the desert
Christ in the desert
1872, 180×210 cm
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy. Inconsolable grief
Inconsolable grief
1884, 228×141 cm
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy. Peasant with a bridle (Portrait of Mina Moiseyev)
Peasant with a bridle (Portrait of Mina Moiseyev)
1883, 125×93 cm
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy. Portrait of the philosopher Vladimir Sergeyevich Solovyov
Portrait of the philosopher Vladimir Sergeyevich Solovyov
1885, 113×94 cm
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy. Actor Aleksandr Pavlovich Lensky in the role of Petruchio in the Shakespeare Comedy "the taming of the shrew"
Actor Aleksandr Pavlovich Lensky in the role of Petruchio in the Shakespeare Comedy "the taming of the shrew"
1883, 62×53.5 cm
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy. Portrait of Dr. Sergei Sergeyevich Botkin
Portrait of Dr. Sergei Sergeyevich Botkin
1882, 70.7×57.5 cm
Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy. Portrait Of Adrian Viktorovich Prakhov
Portrait Of Adrian Viktorovich Prakhov
1879, 88.5×69 cm
View 185 artworks by the artist