“Unknown Wanderers” - The Tretyakov Gallery suggests guessing the name of the artist from his drawing

“Unknown Wanderers” - The Tretyakov Gallery suggests guessing the name of the artist from his drawing
2 December 2019, Monday
The Art Newspaper Russia

Exhibitions in the halls of the graphics of the Tretyakov Gallery are always interesting. “Unknown Wanderers” is an exhibition of little-known graphics by famous artists of the second half of the 19th century.


Textbook artists often appear in drawings and watercolors finer than in large paintings, demonstrating either extraordinary pencil skills or artistic negligence and freedom. "Unknown Wanderers" just suggest surprise the viewer. By showing, for example, a subtle color scheme, the watercolor landscapes of Ivan Kramskoy, an artist, in general, are gloomy. Monochrome sepia of Isaac Levitan are also unexpected, although his lyricism is recognizable in landscape watercolors.


Part of the halls are occupied with sketches for famous paintings. You can imagine from them how the design and color scheme were born and changed. For example, on a pencil sketch of Vasily Surikov to “Boyar Morozova” on a large sheet of paper are already drawn all the numerous characters and the main character, raising her hand with a two-tailed sign. Several color watercolor strokes according to the drawing are a test of color for the future masterpiece. But his small sheet “The Roman Carnival” is so colorful that it seems that a flowerbed is depicted on it, so you won’t guess the author.


In the watercolor sketch of Vasily Polenov for the picture “Among the teachers” from the gospel cycle, the characters are written out casually, attention is focused on the streams of light above the figure of little Christ. You can’t put up a schedule for a long time, and all exhibits will be again hidden in the repository. What makes each graphic exhibition from the funds of the Tretyakov Gallery a rare opportunity to see something not yet seen.


State Tretyakov Gallery
November 29, 2019 - May 17, 2020

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