Portrait a. N. Benois

The artist is Ivanov

Benois Alexander Nikolaevich (1870–1960) – painter, graphic artist, theater artist and critic, art historian, museum figure, one of the organizers and ideologists of the association „World of Art”. Artistic director „Russian seasons “(1908–1911), director at the Moscow Art Theater (1913–1915). Since 1926 he constantly lived in Paris.

Benois is depicted against the background of an easel with a sketch of the decoration to „Parsley “. The portrait is made in the artist’s workshop a. B. Serebryakova. In 1941 there Z. E. Serebryakova wrote a portrait with. P. Ivanova.

The portrait was created in a tragic wartime for France. At that time, Benoit, in connection with the danger of staying in his apartment, located near the largest automobile plants, was forced to temporarily move to the workshop of his nephew – Alexander Borisovich Serebryakov. Nearby was the workshop of Ivanov. For many years of acquaintance with Benoit, frequent meetings and conversations, finally, the community of the situation, when, without removing the coat, I had to work in a cold darkened workshop – all this helped Ivanov create an image of a great life truth. Benois’s tired face, fulfilled by spiritual power, and his whole figure, which seems especially massive in heavy clothes, and every detail of the situation, are expressive and his tired face.

Watercolors, stacks of albums, books, brushes are carefully and lovingly written. Ivanov is extremely accurate not only in the image of external signs, but primarily in the transfer of the internal state of Benois, painted with severe restraint. Winter coat laid down with fur, black cap sharply distinguishes the face and hands of the portrait. The entire picturesque and plastic system of the portrait serves the expressiveness of the created image.

Ivanov gave this substantial psychological portrait to the Russian Museum along with 26 drawings. (AND. Sh.)

Russian portrait. XX century. SPb, 2001. WITH. 264.

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