Bogdanov-Belsky, “Virtuos” – overview of the painting

Bogdanov-Belsky, “Virtuos” – overview of the painting
Bogdanov-Belsky, "Virtuos" - overview of the painting - 1

  • Posted by Bogdanov-Belsky
  • Museum: State Museum of Art of Georgia
  • Year: 1891

Overview of the painting :

Virtuoso – Nikolay Petrovich Bogdanov-Belsky. Oil on canvas. 159 x 129 cm

   A Russian artist with great talent and hard work, with extraordinary fate Nikolai Petrovich Bogdanov-Belsky “left the people”, but was able to reach such creative heights that portraits of emperors and members of their families, famous and famous people of their time ordered him.

   But, nevertheless, he is called, and he himself considered it so – “an artist of the peasant.”.

   Nikolai Petrovich hails from the Russian hinterland, the illegal son of a butterfly who lived with a relative out of mercy, he knows firsthand the peasant life, their lack of rights and hard physical labor.

   Maybe that’s why, sympathizing and loving, his soul was especially opened in works dedicated to village children – barefoot, in simple clothes, but so sincere, clean and kind.

   One of his early paintings on children is Virtuoso, written in 1891.

   What a magnificent view appears before us – against the background of such a landscape sweet to every Russian heart, a no less picturesque group of kids sits.

   All their attention is focused on a boy with balalaika. So who is this virtuoso – a rural boy, in a colored blue shirt and pants with a patch. But how concentrated his face is, how all is absorbed in music, how seriously and businessily he approaches his speech to the public.

   And the audience, it feels, is happy. They listen, probably, wonder how their neighbor is an ordinary boy, and knows how to extract from the instrument such sounds that add up to a wonderful melody.

   The girl does not take her eyes off the virtuoso, impressed by the worst-in-lawing.

   Two little boys are more direct, they are interested in watching fast fingers, behind the movements of the artist’s hands.

   The musician was hardly learning to play instruments somewhere. He is self-taught, but all the more inspires respect for his ability to play balalaika.

   And, apparently, he does it well, judging by the expression on the face of his friend standing near the birch in a red shirt. His face is thoughtful, as happens when a person is carried away by thoughts far, far to the sounds of music that is raving his soul.

   With what care are the faces of children, every element of clothing, every blade of grass and leaves. And the bark on the white-barreled birches, which seem to frame the whole picture, I want to touch and smell the forest.

   What a beautiful, touching and sentimental mood this canvas creates.

   The artist always loved to watch the village guys, and was imbued with their soul for their talent, immorality, genuine curiosity and such a sincere perception of the world.

   Until the end of his days, having lived the rest of his life abroad, Bogdanov-Belsky does not stop drawing children.

   His fate was formed in such a way that he did not have his children. But all his work is very bright and warm, warmed by the cute unique faces of the children – funny, serious, interested, curious, dignified, ranked and simple-minded. Such different ones, which it is simply impossible not to love and not try to protect from the harsh world, as a man with a solar soul Nikolai Petrovich Bogdanov-Belsky did.