RUSSIAN SCHOOL OF REALISM
Isaac Levitan, Golden Autumn, 1895
Isaac Levitan, Lake, Russia, 1900
"Trained in the finest traditions of the great master artists of the past, Russian realism paintings share a similarity in approach but also exhibit a lot of variety. Among other things, these artists were known for their subtle tonalities which blend together to create an overall harmony."
Realism was an artistic movement that emerged in Europe and Russia in the mid XIX century, following Romanticism. In the new ever-changing world a new generation was looking for a true reflection of reality and their own lives given with the power of image, word, music.
The Realist painters rejected Romanticism, which had come to dominate European literature and art, with roots in the late 18th century.
Starting in literature Realism quickly became mainstream across all ways of artistic expression.
Realism in painting was primarily concerned with how things appeared to the eye, rather than containing ideal representations of the world. On a deeper level, term realism here is opposed to mythology, at often at that time in Russia was called Critical realism. Realism sought to portray real and typical contemporary people and situations with truth and accuracy, and not avoiding unpleasant or sordid aspects of life.
The Realists depicted everyday subjects and situations in contemporary settings and attempted to depict the life and emotions of individuals of all social classes in a similar manner. It was a quiet but yet powerful revolution in art. Realism is widely regarded as the beginning of the modern art movement due to the push to incorporate modern life and art together.
Reality always has positive and negative sides. Realism is not bound just to show the ugly side of life. Realism was giving people hope and understanding their position in the modern world, a world where they live.
Being expressed through the Art the real power of Realism was in connection with the public on the level of emotions. Artist’s role is to be at this moment with people he identifies him or her with and send them not just informative but also an emotional message. Connections through emotions are one of the most powerful
Along with true representation of reality, life, and people in a real setting, Russian artists constantly were revealing a strong sense of love to a human being, to the mother country, to God’s creation. Art in Russia is almost like a religion. Realism in Russia has a strong spiritual core. There is a well known saying: “Poet in Russia is more than a poet.” It’s true about Russian painters as well and paint’s role in life of the society.