“Parad to the reign of Paul I,” Benoit – overview of the painting

“Parad to the reign of Paul I,” Benoit – overview of the painting
“Parad to the reign of Paul I,” Benoit - overview of the painting - 1

  • Posted by Alexander Nikolaevich Benoit
  • Museum: Russian Museum
  • Year: 1907

Overview of the painting :

The parade in the reign of Paul I is Alexander Nikolaevich Benoit. Gouache, paper. 59.6 x 82 cm

   Alexander Nikolaevich Benoit is an outstanding personality of the turn of the 19th-20th centuries, a magnificent painter and graphic artist, a talented art critic, historian and theorist of art, an ideologist of the art association “World of Art”.

   “Echo of the past tense” is heard in the image of the panorama of St. Petersburg at the end of the 18th century. Before the audience there is still an unfinished Mikhailovsky castle, in which the emperor will later be killed. In the meantime, Paul I, sitting on a white horse, commands the parade of troops. The king’s addiction to military drill and the organization of armies for amateur parades and buildings that satisfy his vanity are ridiculed by the artist. The rigidity and discipline of the atmosphere of the parade is felt in the graphicality and linearity indicated in the details – the honed steps of the march with the legs raised by the command of the soldiers, the even rhythm of the vertically of the weapon and scaffolding in the background.

   The compositional solution of the work is interesting – Benoit alienates the action of the parade from the viewer with a barrier frame, thereby giving the work a “picture” sound, rather than immersing in what is happening. Flying snowflakes bring revival and peculiar comfort to the image of the event of a long-standing era.