One of his most famous works, “Horsewoman”, Karl Bryullov wrote at the request of Countess Yulia Samoilova in 1832. The name of the Samoilovs can be seen even on the dog’s collar. Initially, the canvas was exhibited in Milan, then it was in the collection of the Countess. And in 1896 the canvas was acquired by the Tretyakov Gallery.
A lot of confusion came out with the definition of the personalities of the persons depicted in the picture. At first, it was believed that the painting depicts Countess Yulia Samoilova herself, but later researchers proved that Bryullov portrayed two of the Countess’s pupils – Giovanina and Amalicia Pacini. The original title of the painting is “Jovanin on a Horse”. An interesting fact – many prints were created from this picture in Italy, but there they are considered a portrait of a famous singer in Italy – Malibran.
In the picture, Bryullov depicted a riding scene – Jovanin returns home and rides on a horse to the high porch, where her half-sister, Amalicia, meets with an enthusiastic look. Movement fills all the figures depicted in the picture – the horse, heated up by the walk, beats with its hoof, the dog, rejoicing at the return of the mistress, rushes under the horse’s hooves.
The joy of meeting after a short parting is the main mood that fills this picture. The viewer seems to be immersed in this atmosphere of joy and unnecessary waiting.
Year of painting: 1832.
Dimensions of the painting: 291.5 x 206 cm.
Writing technique: oil.
Gallery: State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow, Russia.