Our Lady with a baby, Victor Mikhailovich Vasnetsov

Our Lady with a baby, Victor Mikhailovich Vasnetsov
Our Lady with a baby, Victor Mikhailovich Vasnetsov - 1

  • Author: Viktor Mikhailovich Vasnetsov
  • Museum: A fragment of the painting of the Vadimir Cathedral in Kiev
  • Year: 1885-1893

Overview of the painting :

Our Lady with a baby – Victor Mikhailovich Vasnetsov. Fresco. 1885 – 1893

   Religious painting is very formal and is created according to the strictest canons, but Vasnetsov managed to bring his personal vision into the classical image of Our Lady with baby Christ, without violating generally accepted rules. This painting of the cathedral’s payphone is made on a golden background, creating a spectacular volumetric radiance around clearly visible figures on it. It seems that the images are not written on raw plaster, but cut out of stone, so embossed and voluminous they seem from afar.

   The rich, dark and gloomy colors that make the robes of the Virgin are given special tragedy to the image of the mother and son. The dark blue color of the chiton and headscarf against the background of gold seems almost black, as if predicting that this woman will have to wear mourning for her untimely lost son. Baby Christ is shrouded in pure white fabric, like radiance, but a black shadow fell on him from the gloomy robe of his mother.

   The pose in which the Virgin is captured, although it corresponds to the canon of church painting, attracts attention. It stands slightly sideways to the audience, covering the child with its right hand, as if protecting it from the dangerous influence of the world around us. The Virgin here is the same mother as all other earthly women – knowing about the divinity and destiny of her child, she tries to protect him from evil as much as she can.

   With the help of literally a few strokes, Vasnetsov managed to give a flat image of volume and movement, which is emphasized by round-shaped light lines behind the figures and images of winged angels.

   Baby Christ with the beautiful face of the child and completely adult eyes is depicted in a classic blessing pose. In general, the image leaves a feeling of internal drama and a strong intensity of feelings. This is a very strong and expressive canvas.