“Lack”, Konstantin Korovin – overview of the painting

“Lack”, Konstantin Korovin – overview of the painting
"Lack", Konstantin Korovin - overview of the painting - 1

  • Posted by Konstantin Korovin
  • Museum: Tretyakov Gallery
  • Year: 1880s

Overview of the painting :

Failure – Konstantin Alekseevich Korovin. 1880s. Oil on canvas. 53 x 35 cm

   The painting “Lack” refers to the early work of Konstantin Korovin. Created by a 20-year-old beginner painter, this work, however, carries the main signs of the style of the future mature master. This is, first of all, the sweeping manner of writing, saturated colors, some convention in writing details, as well as a clear departure from the canons of academicism, which Korovin considered not just outdated, but inanimate.

   When analyzing, I want to distinguish between two elements – the landscape and the person against the background of the landscape. An endless field, spread to the horizon itself, is depicted in a sketchy manner in the form of dense dynamic strokes that create an uneven texture. The combination of green and yellow colors in its rather contrasting, sharp comparison creates a feeling of a field scorched by the scorching sun. The second half of the background is given to the sky. The cloudy celestial expanse is almost completely filled with thick clubs of gray clouds. The sad mood of the surrounding nature is the best decoration for what happened to the hero of the canvas. The hunter did not hit the target, left with nothing. Korovin expertly depicted the bewilder’s confusion.

   The main character of the canvas is a young man dressed in simple, modest clothes with a small hunting bag on his side. In his left hand he holds a gun, the end of the barrel of which the artist deliberately sets aside with a lighter outline. It seems that the gun was about to shoot and has not cooled down yet, although this shot did not reach the desired goal.

   The queen does not need to turn an unlucky hunter to the audience – he subtly and expressively depicted the hero’s feelings that shone: confusion, frustration, confusion. The outlines of his profile give him a simple rural person – a rough face, a small nose, a slightly ajar mouth. The hero cannot but cause human sympathy among the contemplator, because we can assume how long he walked in his high boots, tracking down prey.

   He shook the shot, but not on the target … And now his hands are involuntarily falling along the body, holding the gun casually, so a lone thin belt hangs from him.

   In his work, Konstantin Korovin relied on “pure” painting, avoiding academicism. If his further searches were aimed mainly at coloristics and technology, then here we can observe the “clean” emotions. His hero is unchiped and simple in the manifestation of feelings. And involuntarily I want to share his failure, putting a sedative hand on his shoulder …