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"Rev. Sergius of Radonezh" - one of the paintings of the religious cycle of Mikhail Nesterov, dedicated to this saint. The artist began working on the canvas in 1891, before completing other paintings in the cycle. However, despite the apparent simplicity of the composition, the writing of the image of Sergius of Radonezh took more than 7 years, and Nesterov completed the work only in 1899.
The composition is really simple: against the background of a withering, autumnal Russian nature, an icon-like figure of a saint is depicted. But this is only a first impression. The picture attracts attention. The same sensation is caused by a barely audible sound, which, amplifying and amplifying, makes you stop and listen.
In fact, thanks to a well-composed composition, the picture seems to sound. The plans rising above each other gave the canvas an extraordinary depth and the dominant figure of the Monk Sergius, almost rises above all these open spaces. This effect gives the canvas some monumentality. The symbolism immediately becomes clear, with the help of which the artist wanted to convey to the viewer his whole emotional impulse, caused by the image of a great man.
The image of St. Sergius is registered by Nesterov also in an unusual manner. The saint is not depicted as a gray-bearded old man. A young, full of energy man is looking at the viewer from the canvas. This is exactly what the artist Sergius of Radonezh wanted to show, thereby asserting that holiness is not age, but human deeds.
The canvas "Rev. Sergius of Radonezh" is somewhat different from the rest of the cycle, being its apotheosis. And maybe that’s why it’s not so scary that, contrary to the wishes of the artist, it’s impossible to see all the paintings of the cycle together. Three of them are in the Tretyakov Gallery, and only the final painting "Rev. Sergius of Radonezh" is exhibited in the Russian Museum.
Description of the External View of the Keyboard Monument