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Artist Petrov-Vodkin: biography and creativity

The subject of our article will be the biography of Petrov-Vodkin. Kuzma S. - an outstanding Russian artist, who worked at the turn of the 19-20 centuries. He was engaged not only in painting, but also in graphics, theatrical and decorative and monumental art. In addition, Petrov-Vodkin is the creator of several autobiographical stories. About this outstanding man and talk.

Petrov-Vodkin biography

Kuzma Sergeyevich was born on October 24, 1878 in Saratov province, in the town of Khvalynsk. At first he studied at the city school, and then entered the Samara Drawing School. Later a few more years he was a pupil of the Central School of Technical Drawing. And only in 1897 the future artist entered the Moscow School of Painting, Architecture and Sculpture, where he joined the workshop of VA Serov. He graduated from the school in 1904.

As an artist Petrov-Vodkin (the biography of which we are now considering) was formed during major changes, taking place both in political life and in the art of Russia and Europe. Critical realism has not yet become obsolete, but new directions have already begun to appear, connected with the changed aesthetic ideals of the 20th century.

Another difficulty of the creative formation of Petrov-Vodkin was that he was interested in literature at the age of fifteen. Because of this, the artist for a long time could not decide which art to give preference. Painting eventually won, but, as we shall see later, Kuzma Sergeevich did not leave any literature.

Journey to Italy and Russian icon painting

In 1905, Petrov-Vodkin went to Italy. Biography of this period, which was four months, tells of the artist's passion for drawing. He recorded on paper all possible movements and positions of the human body. It was these sketches that formed the basis of his first works - "Bereg", "Elegy" and "Sorceresses".

After returning home, the biography of Petrov-Vodkin abruptly changes. The artist gets acquainted with the ancient Russian art. In 1911-1912, he first saw examples of icon painting from the 14th and 15th centuries, which made a great impression on him. From that moment, Kuzma Sergeevich began his creative search in this direction. It is on the basis of icon painting that the artist creates his own unique style.

"Bathing the Red Horse", "Mother", "The Girl on the Volga"

Petrov-Vodkin begins to show his creative identity, whose biography is the subject of our review. The artist brings to the court admirers of excellent excellent samples of the same and created style. For example, the painting "Bathing the Red Horse", which brought Kuzma Sergeevich popularity. At first it was planned to depict a scene of bathing horses at sunset, which the author once saw on the Volga, not far from Kharkov.

But the meeting with the ancient Russian painting forced us to change the original idea. Now the center of the canvas was a fire-like blazing horse, which would evoke associations with the image of St. George the Victorious, found on many ancient icons. In the picture he became a symbol of nobility, mighty will and inexhaustible energy. Those who saw the picture for the first time noted that they found in the canvas an omen of future changes in public life, which, by the way, did not take long to wait. It is no accident that at the exhibition "World of Art" the painting was placed above the entrance, like a banner.

Then there was another picture in the same style - "Mother". Work on it was conducted from 1911 to 1913. On the canvas is a sitting woman in a red skirt and pink sweater, on her arms a child. And in the background are depicted the Volga steppes, which go into the depths of the picture.

But the most important was the canvas "Girl on the Volga", which testifies to the great creative growth of Petrov-Vodkin. This picture has become a kind of stage on the way to the formation of a unique style of Kuzma Sergeevich. Its idea arose from the artist on the basis of impressions obtained during observations of the life of Volzhans. However, not only his native Khvalynsk helped to write the picture, but also memories of Italian Renaissance frescoes, in which young girls were depicted with special grace. It is the combination of worldly observations, the works of Italian masters and Russian icon painting that gave birth to a new original style.


Petrov-Vodkin (the artist's biography confirms this) paid great attention to the education of his young colleagues. So, he taught drawing and painting at the art school E. Zvyagintseva. In addition, Kuzma S. created his own pedagogical system aimed at helping young artists master the skill of painting.

At the same time, Petrov-Vodkin moved in his work to the system of tricolor. His concept was based on the assertion that all the richness of the color palette is based on three colors - blue, red and yellow. Only a combination of these shades can create the most clear and strong harmonies. This position is perfectly illustrated by two paintings by Petrov-Vodkin: "Noon. Summer "and" Morning. " Bathers ".


Met the beginning of revolutionary action in the homeland of Petrov-Vodkin. A brief biography of Kuzma Sergeyevich tells that during this period of his life he was engaged in creating posters, designing magazines, doing all kinds of illustrations.

The most vividly revolutionary reality was reflected in the canvas entitled "1918 in Petrograd." The picture depicted a woman with a child. The mother is standing on the balcony, which is depicted against the backdrop of a street filled with an agitated crowd. She seems to guard her child, which increases the overall emotional alertness of the entire canvas. This work had another name - "Petrograd Madonna". The image of the mother becomes a comprehensive, the only human feeling capable of uniting all people.

Another response to the events of the revolution was the canvas "Battlefield". The picture shows three Red Guards, mourning for the commander who fell in battle. In the background you can see the moment of the death of this commander.

In addition, during the 20-30 years the artist is working on portraits. So, in 1922 from under his brush comes the famous image of Anna Akhmatova.

Biographical works

We continue the topic of the biography of Petrov-Vodkin. Briefly, we can further mention the literary debuts of the famous artist. As a writer, Kuzma S. manifested himself in the creation of biographical works. Among them you can name: "Euclid Space", "Khlynovsk", "Samarkandia".

The first two works were written between 1928 and 1932, when doctors forbade Petrov-Vodkin to paint with oil paints because of a threat to health, because at that time he was seriously ill. And "Samarkandiya" was the result of a visit to Central Asia in 1921. All these stories were well received by critics and the public, and were subsequently reprinted more than once. In addition, the works became the basis for monographs, brochures and articles devoted to the life of Petrov-Vodkin.


The biography of the artist Petrov-Vodkin will be incomplete without mentioning his rewards. So, Kuzma Sergeevich was elected an honorary member of the French astronomical society, which awarded him an honorary diploma. In 1928, the artist participated in the Venetian International Art Exhibition. And in 1936 in Moscow, and then in Leningrad, a solo exhibition of his works took place.


Until the end of life, the ideas of Petrov-Vodkin were absorbed in art, new ideas and ideas were constantly born in his head. However, a serious illness prevented them from realizing, and in 1939 the artist died. Buried Petrov-Vodkin was at the Volkov cemetery in Leningrad.

Kuzma Sergeyevich's art became an art of great proportions, based on classical European traditions and Old Russian painting. The unique and inimitable style created by Petrov-Vodkin still causes not only public interest, but also a lot of criticism disputes.

This was the life path that Petrov-Vodkin went to. Biography, paintings and books of the artist perfectly complement this information.

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