Was a bastard son of a landowner Astakhova recorded in his family of the serf Adam svalbe. Having obtained the free, studied in St. Petersburg Academy of arts (1788-1803). Lived in Moscow (1809), Tver (1811), St. Petersburg (1812), and in 1816-1822 and from 1828 in Rome and Naples.
The master was playing and schedule; working mainly Italian pencil and pastel), he created a great number of household types (like a Blind musician, 1809, Russian Museum), as well as the famous series of pencil portraits of participants in the Patriotic war of 1812.
Died Kiprensky in Rome on 17 October 1836.
O. A. Kiprensky - illegitimate son of a landowner A. S. Dyakonov-was brought up in the family of foster father, A. K. svalbe. In 1788, under the name Kibraysky (later amended), he was enrolled in boarding school at AH. The course finished in 1803 and was left retired for three years, then another three. During this time he wrote a number of works including "Portrait of A. svalbe" (1804), in which he showed himself a talented portraitist, a follower F. S. Rokotov, D. G. Levitsky and C. L. Borovikovsky and, moreover, a representative of the new romantic movement.
In the following years Kiprensky performed several superb portraits, enhance its popularity in this field, - E. P. Rostopchina, A. A. Chelishchev, V. A. Perovsky and others, his greatest achievement was the famous portrait of E. C. Davydova (1809). Still not installed, who is depicted on it: evdokima, Yevgraf or how long it was believed, Denis Davydov, poet and future hero-partisan 1812, but this is not essential, because romantically buoyant were embodied the features of a whole generation, who would soon make a military feat. OH for Kiprensky portraits awarded him the rank of the academician (1812). Because of the war with Napoleon motivated the artist again take up portraits, but now most of them are not beautiful, and pencil: as if he was in a hurry to perpetuate his contemporaries. This series has formed a kind of group portrait of Russian society in the heroic time. Here was dominated by the image of the military from the environment artist And P. Bakunin, M. P. Lanskoy, A. R. Tomilova, E. I. Kaplica, P. A. Olenin (all 1813), and others; later joined them images artists - Century A. Olenin (1813), N. I. Utkin (1814), K. N. Batyushkov (1815). The result of this inspired work summed up in two great picturesque portrait 1816 - Century A. Zhukovsky and S. S. Uvarov.
Kiprensky became famous and respected. It was even called the Russian Bantikom" (i.e. van Dyck); but he was not quite satisfied with the success.
The fate of Kiprensky fatally affected the delusion that he had regarding his work. This wonderful, natural born portraitist was engaged in portrait painting mainly for a living, and true to its vocation considered a historical painting and constantly wanted to write a substantial plot works that were to immortalize him. That is why, barely Europe was faced with the world, he used his right to foreign pensionerstvo, went to Italy with a determination to finally create the big picture. First, he chose the plot of "Apollo affecting Pithon" - an allegory of victory of Alexander I over Napoleon, but to work really began; then wrote "Anakreontova tomb and without any success showed it at the exhibition in Rome. Portraits, among them such gems as the portraits of the C. C. of Scherbatova (1819), A. M. Golitsyn (approx. 1819), continued to do it much better; they continued to bring him recognition is so high that in 1820, he was even commissioned a portrait for the Uffizi gallery in Florence. His continued pensionerstvo (twice extended) finally ended, and in early 1822, the artist had to leave Italy. Home he traveled for a long time, on the way we stopped at Marienbad where he had spoken with I.-Century Goethe and double-painted it. His last foreign work was started, obviously, in Milan and finished in Paris portrait of E. C. Avdulina (1822) - refined and subtle, but a worrying lack of warmth, a living contact with the model, so typical of the previous works of the artist.
In St. Petersburg, where Kiprensky was reached only by the summer of 1823, he was met unexpectedly cold. Not last role is played distributed by detractors (and he knew how to make) rumors about the two stories, overshadowed by the end of his stay in Rome. The first was related to the suspicion in murder of the models and the second posing with him ten-year-old girl Mariuccia to which it is extremely attached and show about her exceptional care. Yet the main cause was that the public taste had greatly changed. Trying to correct the situation, the artist began the big picture - long-abandoned them "Apollo slaying Pithon," and finished in 1825; but again not produced the desired impression. In the portraits he still shone skill, but they turned out to be cold-alienated. Among them there were only two of happy exceptions. The first is a remarkable portrait of A. S. Pushkin (1827), with rare transmitting power isolation of the poet in his own world of inspiration and loneliness high soul in the surrounding world (that remained secret for the romantically-minded artist). The second is the self-portrait, executed a year later, amazing ruthless the frankness with which the artist looked at yourself grown old and a bit pathetic.
In 1828 Kiprensky again went to Italy - it was a futile escape from himself. His previous success and here was forgotten, moreover, in Rome for a few years already shone K. P. Bryullov, ottenuti rivals. Still believing in his calling historical painter, Kiprensky's likely to attract the attention of the painting "Tiburtine sibyl, predicting the fall of the Messiah August and failed. More interesting were his two paintings 1831: "Girl with a fruit and newspaper Readers in Naples" - in essence, portraits, although not named. However, they have not become the event. Kiprensky received fewer orders and started to feel the need. He has travelled Italy, worked hard, played a good portraits, including B. Thorvaldsen and F. A. Golitsyn (both 1833), but they are not approached past achievements. Competing with Bryullov, he tried to write the big parade portrait and not coped with it: this spectacular genre is not consistent with its capabilities and power of the artist has already dried up.
At the beginning of 1836 he finally managed to earn such a sum, which allowed him to repay creditors and to have the decision to marry Mariucci (Anne-Mary Falcucci). For this he had in June 1836 to accept the Catholic faith, and in July he married without publicity. It is not known whether has found it a welcome rest. Some contemporaries recalled that he quarreled with his young wife and severely drunk, others aren't talking about it. Still, his life came to an end: he caught cold, fell ill with pneumonia and died four months after the wedding. After a few months came to light his daughter Clothilde Kiprensky, but the trace her hopelessly lost.