Lyudmila Markina

ARTISTIC DYNASTY

Lyudmila Markina
Fyodor Bruni. THE FOUNDER OF THE DYNASTY

#1 2018 (58)

The Tretyakov Gallery's permanent exhibition features, alongside the works of Karl Bryullov, a gripping male portrait. It was painted by an apprentice of ugrcat Karl”, Fyodor Moller (Theodor von Moller), and features a hazel-eyed, brownhaired man with bushy hair and fluffy whiskers. The pale face is set off by a white starched dress shirt, while the black silk necktie highlights the model's elegance. A gold chain and the insignia of the Order of St. Stanislaus indicate the holder’s wealth and position in society, while an overcoat flung over the shoulders lends a certain romantic casual look to the model. Who is the subject?

INVESTIGATIONS AND DISCOVERIES

Lyudmila Markina
THE MANY FACES OF IVAN AIVAZOVSKY

#1 2017 (54)

A great marine painter who left a vast artistic legacy behind him, Ivan Aivazovsky was himself often portrayed by his contemporaries, while as a talented portraitist himself, the artist also created around 10 self-portraits over the course of his long artistic career. He was painted by a whole host of his fellow artists including friends from the Academy of Arts such as Vasily Sternberg and Mikhail Scotti; older contemporaries such as Academician Alexei Tyranov and the “patriarch” of the Moscow School of Painting, Vasily Tropinin; the chief ideologue of the “Peredvizhnik” (Wanderers) movement, Ivan Kramskoi; and the “apologist” for salon painting, Konstantin Makovsky. Two marble busts of Aivazovsky survive, one by Alexander Belyaev, depicting the artist as a young man, the other by Leopold Bernhard Bernstamm, created in the painter’s old age. After Aivazovsky’s death, a bronze statue was erected in Feodosia, designed by the sculptor Ilya Ginzburg. Despite all this, Aivazovsky’s depiction in art has never been the subject of significant study. How did the great artist perceive himself, and how did he wish to be seen by future generations? How, indeed, was he viewed by his contemporaries?

HERITAGE

Lyudmila Markina
“POETS OF THE HUMAN VISAGE”: FYODOR ROKOTOV AND THOMAS GAINSBOROUGH

#2 2016 (51)

We owe this characterization, “Poets of the Human Visage”, of these two portrait-painters to the art historian Alexei Lebedev: it dates from 1945, when the Soviet researcher’s enthusiasm was encouraged by the rapid progress in building ties with the UK.[1] His comparison of the Russian and English painters caught on, although Rokotov was never called “the Russian Gainsborough” in his lifetime. Nor had the fame that each artist enjoyed in his own land spread to the other country. At the 1862 International Exhibition in London Russian portraiture was represented by Levitsky and Borovikovsky: Rokotov was then simply forgotten in his homeland. Nor did Russians have any knowledge of the British artist: the remarkable “Portrait of a Lady in Blue” now at the Hermitage - Gainsborough’s only masterpiece in a Russian collection - was acquired as late as 1912. So what do the great Russian and British artists, so apparently different from one another, have in common?

HERITAGE

Lyudmila Markina
Flowers for the Madonna. On the bicentenary of Mikhail Scotti's birth

#4 2014 (45)

OCTOBER 2014 WILL SEE CELEBRATIONS MARKING THE 200TH ANNIVERSARY OF MIKHAIL SCOTTI'S BIRTH. TODAY, THE GENERAL PUBLIC IS HARDLY AWARE OF THE ARTIST'S NAME; IN HIS LIFETIME, HOWEVER, AS A MEMBER OF THE ACADEMY OF ARTS AND PROFESSOR, SCOTTI WAS WIDELY KNOWN AND HIS WORK WAS MUCH SOUGHT AFTER. SCOTTI'S CONTEMPORARIES, INCLUDING MEMBERS OF THE RUSSIAN IMPERIAL FAMILY, ADMIRED HIS MASTERFUL WATERCOLOURS, HIS "ITALIAN-STYLE" PAINTINGS, AND HIS PORTRAITS. SCOTTI RECEIVED WELL-DESERVED RECOGNITION FOR HIS HISTORICAL PAINTINGS, TOO: RECENTLY HIS PAINTING "MININ AND POZHARSKY" (NIZHNY NOVGOROD ART MUSEUM) HAS BECOME PARTICULARLY FAMOUS.

 

CURRENT EXHIBITION

Lyudmila Markina
More Than Romanticism

#1 2014 (42)

THE EXHIBITION "MORE THAN ROMANTICISM" WAS HELD FROM NOVEMBER 2013 TO JANUARY 2014 IN THE ENGINEERING WING OF THE TRETYAKOV GALLERY AS PART OF THE "EXCHANGE" YEAR OF CULTURAL COOPERATION BETWEEN RUSSIA AND HOLLAND. FOR THE FIRST TIME THE MOSCOW PUBLIC COULD SEE WORKS FROM THE TRETYAKOV GALLERY ALONGSIDE PAINTINGS FROM THE TEYLERS MUSEUM IN HAARLEM AND THE PRIVATE COLLECTION OF JEF RADEMAKERS FROM BRASSCHAAT, A PROVINCE OF ANTWERP. BEARING IN MIND THE UNIQUE FEATURES OF THE TWO COLLECTIONS, THE CURATORS TRIED TO HIGHLIGHT BOTH THEIR SHARED FEATURES AND THEIR DIFFERENCES, AS WELL AS THE EUROPEAN AND THE NATIONAL ELEMENTS OF RUSSIAN AND DUTCH FINE ART. THE NAMES OF GREAT PAINTERS SUCH AS REMBRANDT VAN RIJN AND FRANS HALS, WHOSE MASTERPIECES ARE IN THE HERMITAGE'S COLLECTION OF THE GOLDEN AGE OF DUTCH ART, ARE WELL KNOWN TO THE RUSSIAN PUBLIC. THANKS TO THE FAMOUS FILM, THE YOUNGER GENERATION IS FAMILIAR WITH JOHANNES VERMEER'S PAINTING "GIRL WITH A PEARL EARRING" (1665). THE ART OF THE UNITED KINGDOM OF THE NETHERLANDS OF THE 1800-1850S, HOWEVER, IS ONLY KNOWN TO A SMALL CIRCLE OF ART EXPERTS. MEANWHILE, THE PAINTING TRADITIONS OF THE GREAT AND "LESSER" DUTCH MASTERS WERE CARRIED ON INTO A NEW HISTORICAL ERA, THAT OF ROMANTICISM.

 

CURRENT EXHIBITIONS

Lyudmila Markina
"The Spark of Peter the Great"

#3 2013 (40)

The exhibition "Tsarina Elizabeth and Moscow", running at the Tretyakov Gallery from December 9 2010 to March 27 2011, commemorates the 300th anniversary of the birth of the Russian empress. Staged in the Engineering Building on Lavrushinsky lane, it concludes a trio of shows that have run there over many years: the first project, "Catherine the Great and Moscow" (at the Krymsky Val building), took place in 1998. That was a pioneering effort to introduce to the public the artefacts of "imperial" history and culture, which were kept away from the public eye under Soviet rule. The ties between the great female ruler of Russia and Moscow had never before been the subject of careful study. A year later the exhibition "Peter the Great and Moscow" opened in the Engineering Building, marking the 300th anniversary of the Grand Embassy of Peter I.

HERITAGE

Lyudmila Markina
“An artist with wonderful talent and comfortable means…”

#4 2012 (37)

On the 200th anniversary of the birth of Fyodor Moller

Thus the engraver Fyodor Iordan described his friend Fyodor Moller (born Otto Friedrich Theodor von Möller, 1812-1874). Born into a family of Baltic German nobility and later in life a professor of St. Petersburg’s Academy of Arts, Moller lived a happy family and artistic life, gaining recognition in his lifetime, most notably for his portraits of Nikolai Gogol. Moller’s name, however, was soon almost forgotten, and today he remains little more than a link between Russian and Estonian culture. A conference devoted to the bicentenary of the artist’s birth took place in Kuressaare castle on the Estonian Island of Saaremaa in September 2012: it was there, in this small resort town, that Moller spent his summers from 1856 onwards.
Moller lived a happy life with his young wife and children on his estate, by a lake not far from the unique Kaali field of meteorite craters, creating a number of well-known paintings and giving art lessons to enthusiasts. He is buried in the Lutheran cemetery nearby.

CURRENT EXHIBITIONS

Lyudmila Markina
«O dolce Napoli»
Naples through the eyes of Russian and Italian Artists of the first half of the 19th Century

#4 2011 (33)

The title of the exhibition at the Tretyakov Gallery’s “Engineering” wing was borrowed from a Neapolitan folk song – and for good reason, since the lines epitomize the special feelings about this southern city, one unique in Italy. “Eternal Rome”, which became a recognized academy of European masters; classic Florence, a refuge of intellectuals and patrons of the arts; carnivalesque Venice – each city is enjoyable in its own way. But Naples is special because of its location, mild coastal climate and distinct blissful atmosphere of relaxed “do-nothing-ness”.

EXCLUSIVE PUBLICATIONS

Lyudmila Markina
Pyotr Zakharov-Chechenets in the Tretyakov Gallery:
A Historical Chronicle

#3 2011 (32)

I came across the idea of this article by sheer chance, when a group of reporters from Grozny "descended" upon the Tretyakov Gallery. Unprepared, I was to give an interview about the art of Pyotr Zakharov-Chechenets. In the introductory room, my attention was caught by an old photo¬graph featuring the interior of the gallery in 1898, which showed that Zakharov-Chechenets's por¬traits fitted in perfectly with those hanging beside them, including masterpieces of Russian art of the 1830s-1840s by Karl Briullov and Fyodor Bruni. Almost all of his best works in the collec¬tion were purchased by Pavel Tretyakov. What was it that attracted the demanding collector? Images of the people who were "dear to the nation's heart"? Or the quality of the artist's crafts¬manship? How, and under what circumstances, were his paintings acquired by the Tretyakov Gallery? Looking for answers, I researched at the department of manuscripts of the Tretyakov Gallery, and in the newspaper and dissertation departments of the Russian National Library.

EXCLUSIVE PUBLICATIONS

Ludmila Markina
German and Russian artists: rendezvous in Rome

Special issue. ITALY–RUSSIA: ON THE CROSSROADS OF CULTURES

Italy’s great traditions of the past, its role as the cradle of the European civilization, its ancient monuments and architecture, friendly climate and the lifestyle of its cheerful and talented people – all that, since ancient times, have seemed appealing to all kind of travellers, philosophers, poets, men of letters and artists from around the world. Rome has become the treasurehouse of unique works of art and artefacts as the landmarks of different epochs and styles. For centuries the city functioned as the Academy of Europe, the major school for students from different parts of the continent. Artists, representing different national schools and movements came to communicate with and learn from each other. In the first half of the nineteenth century there were two communities of painters – German and Russian – who could distinguish themselves from the rest; they were the most numerous, and their representatives were the most acclaimed: for example, Johann Friedrich Overbeck, Alexander Ivanov, Julius Schnoff von Carolsfeld, Karl Brullov, Peter Cornelius and Fyodor Bruni. Although Russian painters joined the world artistic process rather late, they turned out to be extremely talented, individualistic and versatile. The author of this article has been studying the history of Russian – German artistic contacts for many years. Thanks to the scholarship granted by the Bibliotheca Hertziana in Rome, Prof. Ludmila Markina, PhD in Arts, had a chance to work in the Eternal City for some time. She is happy to share the discoveries she made there.

CURRENT EXHIBITIONS

Lyudmila Markina
“The Spark of Peter the Great”

#4 2010 (29)

The exhibition “Tsarina Elizabeth and Moscow”, running at the Tretyakov Gallery from December 9 2010 to March 27 2011, commemorates the 300th anniversary of the birth of the Russian empress. Staged in the Engineering Building on Lavrushinsky lane, it concludes a trio of shows that have run there over many years: the first project, “Catherine the Great and Moscow” (at the Krymsky Val building), took place in 1998. That was a pioneering effort to introduce to the public the artefacts of “imperial” history and culture, which were kept away from the public eye under Soviet rule. The ties between the great female ruler of Russia and Moscow had never before been the subject of careful study. A year later the exhibition “Peter the Great and Moscow” opened in the Engineering Building, marking the 300th anniversary of the Grand Embassy of Peter I.

CURRENT EXHIBITIONS

Lyudmila Markina
Romantic Russia

#4 2010 (29)

In the very heart of Paris, in the neighbourhood of New Athens, not far from the noisy and notorious Moulin Rouge cabaret, there is a Museum of Romantic Life (Musee de la Vie Romantique). A quiet patio on Rue Chaptal shelters an elegant mansion with a small garden closely planted with sweet-smelling roses and blooming mallows. The house was home to the Dutch artist Ary Scheffer1, who settled here after the July Revolution of 1830..

CURRENT EXHIBITIONS

Lyudmila Markina
Borovikovsky from Paris

№3 2008 (20)

Last year marked the 250th anniversary of the birth of Vladimir Lukich Borovikovsky (1757-1825). The artist was the last of the acclaimed painters of the 18th century. His portraits of personalities of the age of the Enlightenment, and first of all the sentimental young ladies whose beauty was “preserved by Borovikovsky” (in the words of the poet Yakov Polonsky) won him a deserved acclaim.

MASTERPIECES OF RUSSIAN ART

Lyudmila Markina
The “Fatal Aurora”. An Unfinished Story

№1 2008 (18)

On September 18–19 2007, in London, Sotheby’s was due to offer for sale a unique collection of Russian art belonging to Mstislav Rostropovich and Galina Vishnevskaya1. The most valuable lots included the “Portrait of Aurora Karlovna Demidova” by Karl Briullov, priced at £800,000 –1,200,000. Back in 1995 the Tretyakov Gallery had wanted to buy this piece, but Galina Pavlovna “ran with the ball”. It looked as if the opportunity was presenting itself again – but the collection was bought up in its entirety by the Russian billionaire Alisher Usmanov.

EXCLUSIVE PUBLICATIONS

Lyudmila Markina
Sergei Ivanov: In the Shadow of a Great Brother

№2 2007 (15)

Looking at the Russian graves in Testacchio, the Roman cemetery for non-Catholics, in the autumn of 2003, my attention was drawn to one particularly well-tended tombstone. My guide Vanda Gasperovich, a lecturer at the University of Rome, explained that the grave belonged to Sergei Ivanov, architect and brother of the outstanding Russian painter.

CURRENT EXHIBITIONS

Lyudmila Markina
The Enigma of Alexander Ivanov Bicentenary of the Artist

№4 2006 (13)

"Ivanov is a real enigma. On the one hand, is there a Russian who doesn’t know him? And on the other, no one among the Russians know him." These words, written by Sergei Diaghilev early in the 20th century, can be repeated today, as the country marks the 200th anniversary of the artist’s birth.

EXCLUSIVE PUBLICATIONS

L. MARKINA
GERMAN AND RUSSIAN ARTISTS: RENDEZVOUS IN ROME

№2 2004 (03)

Italy’s great traditions of the past, its role as the cradle of the European civilization, its ancient monuments and architecture, friendly climate and the lifestyle of its cheerful and talented people – all that, since ancient times, have seemed appealing to all kind of travellers, philosophers, poets, men of letters and artists from around the world. Rome has become the treasurehouse of unique works of art and artefacts as the landmarks of different epochs and styles.

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