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Portrait of the artist Konstantin Korovin

Painting, 1891, 111×89 cm

Description of the artwork «Portrait of the artist Konstantin Korovin»

By the time when Valentin Serov began to write a portrait Konstantin Korovin, they shared many years of friendship. They ate together, drank together, worked together – this portrait was painted in their joint workshop on Dolgorukovskaya street in Moscow. Savva Mamontov jokingly called their "Serafin". This friendship surprised many: the artists were just as inseparable as, well, different.

Eternally sullen, taciturn Serov and Korovin Joker, optimist, human holiday. Serov was always neat, dressed immaculately. Korovin always looked like he just woke up. Serov was a principled, honest and firm in their beliefs. Korovin – changeable and soft. Serov wrote slowly, thoroughly, accurately. Korovin worked as he lived – quickly, casually, a large joyful strokes. Serov provoked in others respect and trust. Korovin loved.

Serov, Korovin forgive a little levity, give views and the eternal chaos in the workshop. He saw it as "gratifying," which is so sought. Korovin knew that near him the man who will not fail.

The difference of the characters did not harm their relationship, quite the contrary – these two complement each other. Those curious to detect in this portrait the face of the joke – because this is the rare case when you make fun of a friend decided it was Serov.

Rough DAB, distinctly decorative pillow in the foreground, a General sense of neokonchennaja – Serov deliberately exaggerates the manner so beloved of the Impressionists Korovin. It is witty, subtle and friendly parody: at first glance, the portrait Korovin looks like it was written by Korovin. However, jokes aside, and completely disguise their creative "I" Serov failed. Here, one hundred percent similarity, and the famous Serov penetration into character, and his storytelling.

Korovin looks serious but his eyes smiling beneath a mask of concentration hiding people easy, fun, carefree. It is stationary, but in a relaxed pose reminiscent of readiness at any moment to dart, to dance, to loose, to gamble. His right hand set rather arbitrary, but leaves no doubt – we are an artist, accustomed to hold a brush. Fluency letter emphasizes the wildness of nature – perhaps the best styling would not make and idol KorovinAnders Zorn.

As for the composition, it is dictated by two factors. First, placing the model on the sofa, Serov gave the portrait of intimacy. And secondly, it was the only way at least for a short time immobilize his turbulent friend. Which during the sessions portrayed pantomime mutual friends, sang and was very upset (it was late autumn), which will freeze back to the wall.

Author: Andrew Zimoglyadov
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About the artwork

Art form: Painting

Subject and objects: Portrait

Style of art: Impressionism

Technique: Oil

Materials: Canvas

Date of creation: 1891

Size: 111×89 cm

Artwork in selections: 20 selections

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