Borisov-Musatov Victor – “Ghosts”

The paintings painted by Viktor Borisov-Musatov in 1902-1903 belong to the so-called Saratov cycle of the painter. These include the works “Pond”, “Drama at the Tapestry”. The painting “Ghosts” is the final one in this cycle, the most emotional and expressive.

The painting depicts the estate, in which creative life once was in full swing, Krylov and Derzhavin stayed here, and now it is falling into desolation. A semitransparent female figure with a sad face personifies the farewell to the old, the arrival of the new, the change in the noble life. Much has changed in the usual life of Russia at the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries, and this is what Borisov-Musatov tried to show in his works. A large number of paintings on this topic gave the artist the title of “singer of noble nests”, his paintings were called the lyrical diary of the dying former Russia.

The manner in which Viktor Borisov-Musatov’s painting “Ghosts” is painted is close to symbolism due to the presentation of the world as something unstable, ephemeral. The artist achieved this effect by using a special combination of colors: not only the silhouettes of ghosts, but also the manor house, blur and merge. Because of this, it seems that another reality is hidden under the image, but it is just as shaky and weightless.

Year of painting: 1903.

Painting dimensions: no data.

Material: canvas.

Writing technique: tempera.

Genre: landscape.

Style: symbolism.

Gallery: State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, Russia.

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