Russian Painters: Depicting Infusion of Light, Painting Snow

Little Russian Ox-Cart in winter Ivan Aivazovsky,  

Unlike in past, the Genre of Landscape Painting has now become a distinctive class of paintings. 

Painting seascapes and landscapes in winter has become a powerful fascination for some artists. 

On one side it adores the beauty of ever-changing surfaces of Mother Earth, and on another beautification of the sky, too, makes the artists and art lovers enjoying this genre of painting.

Master artist like Ivan Constantinovich Aivazovsky with the skill of creating wonderfully balanced compositions, and using the tonal values of colours at their best would recreate the beauty on canvas. Landscape painting has been one of the ancient forms of art, but it attracts the artists and art lovers of modern time, too. The winter landscapes are much hard to recreate onto a canvas.

The romanticism artist, Ivan Constantinovich Aivazovsky, once said that: The movement of natural elements cannot be captured by brush; to paint lightning, a gust of wind or the splash of a wave from nature is inconceivable. But he had genuinely tried his best to capture what he believed to be inconceivable. When we see canvases painted by Monet, Van Gogh or Turner, we feel that we are looking at the visual documentation of the panorama of nature. The element of an artist’s desire to recreate the scene that he or she sees makes these types of painting so successful. This very passion has survived the generations of prominent painters.

Loading Provisions off the Crimean coast 
Marine Art Ol on Canvas Ivan Aivazovsky
Russian Museum, Saint Petersburg

Though the Artists can choose unlimited subjects for depicting their artistic prowess, the landscape, seascapes and marine scapes have the timeless appeal; to the minds of painters, and to the minds of art lovers. Such is the aesthetic significance of these paintings. 

Once we focus our eyes on paintings done by artists like Alfred Sisley or David Friederich, we get involved in the unspoiled beauty of nature. That is called the artistic attraction of the painting art.

In this painting 'Loading Provisions off the Crimean coast'; the Russian master artist Ivan Constantinovich Aivazovsky has tried infusing transparency of the colours to the effect that we can feel the reflection of the sun in seawater, happening just before our eyes. Here the play of light gives a romantic look to the seascape. 

Ivan Constantinovich Aivazovsky (1817 - 1900) was admired for his technique of painting and the rich imagination in depicting the happening on landscapes. In the above painting, we can see the shimmering play of light on waves; and sea-foam is visible in the painting. He had taken education at Saint Petersberg. He had also travelled to Italy, where he acquainted himself with the master art pieces displayed in Italian museums. 

Seascape by Russian Artist: The seascape painters attempt to catch every mood of the water, the moods of water they experience: they paint peace of the water; they want to paint the terror in water, too. The pleasure in looking at a seascape painting lies in the fact that such a painting captures the happening of a moving object: the sea waters. It is a challenge to an artist, to lay all the moods of the constantly moving water and the atmosphere of the sea on his or her canvas.

The Ninth Wave Oil on Canvas 
Ivan Aivazovsky

Water in all of its form has been a popular subject among painters—beginners and master artists. For painting the sea, we have to go near to the seashore. It provides us with the real feel of the seawater and the entire environment. Most of the artists have preferred painting seascape by sitting at the seashore. Some do it from the balcony of a comfortable hotel from which the sea is clearly visible. 

But there are artists who have painted the seascape by going in the middle of the sea. Why? Why should they go to a place where the danger is roaring. It is because they want the real thrill. It is because they tried painting each and every mood of the sea. 

The Art of Painting Seascape: In the above painting, The Ninth Wave, the Russian painter Aivasovsky Ivan Constantinovich who was born in the family of a merchant of Armenian origin in the town of FeodosiaCrimea has demonstrated the violent but eye-catching mood of the sea. With keeping the romantic feature of painting intact, the artist has demonstrated his unfailing realistic tendency so evidently in this painting.

Presently located at The State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, The Ninth Wave (1853) that demonstrated Aivasovsky Ivan Constantinovich’s artistic proves in painting at the peak level is considered one of the best paintings by the Russian painters. In The Ninth Wave, the sea is shown as it happens after a night storm where the people on board are terrorized and facing a dangerous environment. Here the sailors are painted attempting to save themselves from the wrecked ship. 

Allegory as Theme: If there is any allegory in this painting, it is in its colour scheme. By using bright and hopeful colours the painter has become suggesting something beyond the colours. The colour scheme of the painter suggests that the sea is not so frightening that the people on board become helpless in saving themselves. They are hopeful. By showing the terrorising upsurge of the waves, the painter has also depicted hope of the bright light in distance. 

It is a proverbial saying that a painter can say in a picture what a writer cannot say in the writing of thousands of words: and if we are to believe the allegory embedded in this painting, The Ninth Wave, the proverb is not said without reasons. 

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