Ilya Repin. The painting “Plowman. Leo Tolstoy on arable land , 1887

The painting Plowman Leo Tolstoy on arable land by Ilya Efimovich Repin

Ilya Repin. The painting “Plowman. Leo Tolstoy on arable land , 1887
Ilya Repin. The painting “Plowman. Leo Tolstoy on arable land , 1887

The painting Plowman Leo Tolstoy on arable land by Ilya Efimovich Repin – a world-famous portrait of the great writer

Plowman. Leo Tolstoy on arable land – a painting by Ilya Efimovich Repin, painted during his stay in Yasnaya Polyana. A naturalistic image is similar to photography.

In the center are two white horses. One is harnessed to the plow, the other pulls the harrow. The animals are not from the lordly stables: the ridge and moles appear, their bellies hang down, which is typical when feeding with one hay. By depicting the famous writer engaged in simple peasant labor, the artist managed to convey the calmness and everyday life of what was happening.

Using dull colors, he gave a natural shade to plowed land, greenish-yellow fields that had not yet been touched by the plow, and a gray strip of forest on the horizon. The main character, on whose portrait the master worked, does not look at the viewer, giving all his attention to the processing of the site. One gets the impression of a scene accidentally seen.

Title of the painting: Plowman Leo Tolstoy on arable land
Author: Ilya Efimovich Repin (1844-1930).
Year of writing: 1887.
Size: 27.8 x 40.3 cm.
Style: Realism.
Genre: Household, portrait.
Technique: Oil painting.
Material: Cardboard.
Location: State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow.

Ilya Repin is a famous Russian artist of the late XIX – early XX centuries, teacher and academician, master of the realistic style.

After a personal acquaintance with Leo Tolstoy, which took place in 1880, he created several portraits of the writer that became widely known. The plot “Plowman. Leo Tolstoy on arable land “appeared on the very first visit of the painter to Yasnaya Polyana. While the count was helping to cultivate the land of a local widow, Repin followed him into the field. Catching a good angle, he quickly made a sketch in his notebook, on which he later wrote the original. The work was created in the technique that was familiar to Repin: without fine detailing, he was able to convey the impression of live action.

The writer himself and his family did not like the idea of ​​replicating a fleetingly captured scene. They feared that this would cause a lot of gossip: people would think that Tolstoy was posing. But out of respect for his friend, Lev Nikolayevich agreed to create lithographs. Another sketch from nature has been preserved, which is also attributed to Repin. She is less well known. On it, the radiant plowman seems haughty, and the peasants watching him look with irony.

The plot of Repin’s work was widely replicated during the life of the classic. It could be seen on knife handles, porcelain, cologne bubbles, various embroideries and souvenirs. In 1908, a whole series was published, timed to coincide with the anniversary of the writer. Sometimes such popularity gave rise to anecdotes. One of them: “Tolstoy is reported:” Master, it’s served to plow “. The painting “Plowman. Leo Tolstoy on arable land ”by Ilya Efimovich Repin, despite the ambiguous opinion of his contemporaries and numerous cartoons, remains one of the canonical images of the outstanding classic of Russian literature.