Picture “On the island of Valaame”, Archip Ivanovich Quinji – overview

Picture “On the island of Valaame”, Archip Ivanovich Quinji – overview
Picture "On the island of Valaame", Archip Ivanovich Quinji - overview - 1

  • Posted by Arkhip Ivanovich Quinji
  • Museum: Tretyakov Gallery
  • Year: 1873

Overview of the painting :

On the island of Valaame – Arkhip Ivanovich Quinji. 1873. Oil on canvas. 76×130 cm

   In 1875, the Quinji Archip was crowned with the Greek Faith Ketcherji, and immediately after that they were leaving for a trip to Balaam. The choice of a place for a post-wedding voyage is not accidental, since the island in Lake Ladoga was a favorite place for all St. Petersburg landscape painters. It’s the turn and Quinji to get acquainted with the beauties of a secluded land.

   Immediately upon returning home, the painter began to work hard, reproducing the impressions received. So the canvas “On the island of Valaam” appeared, which from the very first exposition received enthusiastic responses, including from the “comrades in the workshop” (Repin, Kramsky).

   The picture depicts a bare rocky shore. Through heavy land, similar to granite, once made their way and now two thin trees rise – pine and birch. A special rhythm is given by the repetition of this natural ensemble – two trees are echoed by copies of them: two more trees a little further, and more. This technique takes the viewer’s eyes deep into the picture, to the dark forest and gray horizon.

   In the foreground is the winding ribbon of the little river, which is completely overgrown with a person and flows into a large lake. It is presented modestly here – Quinji depicted only its edge on the right side of the canvas.

   This whole multi-element, but rather empty landscape is illuminated by silver light, indicating either sunset or inevitably impending thunderstorm. This technique creates a mysterious, wary mood.

   The sky is admirable. In the image of the sky with its entire spectrum of color spills, Quinji was an unsurpassed master. The warm light-bagry color of the sky in the left corner of the canvas harmoniously flows into the deep blue in the center to finally become dark gray and thick above the lake itself in the right part of the work.

   The presented picture became the first purchased patron Pavel Tretyakov, which undoubtedly spoke about the recognition of the talent of a young artist.