AIVAZOVSKY PAINTING SOLD 203.000 € AT AUCTION
Jean AÏVASOVSKY (Ivan AIVAZOVSKY) (1817-1900)
Return from the Fields, Little Russia, 1864
Oil on canvas
Signed Aïvazovsky 1864
59 x 77 cm
CERTIFICATE OF AUTHENTICITY RELEASED BY GUILLAUME ARAL (GALERIE FERRERO), EXPERT OF AIVAZOVSKY'S WORK.
SOLD AT AUCTION AT RENNES ENCHERES, APRIL 17TH, 2023
Although internationally renowned for his seascapes, Aïvasovsky also enjoyed executing landscapes, which were a counterpart to his seascapes.
Its “storms” corresponded to landscapes battered by the elements: floods, heavy snowfalls, torrential rains, eruptions, eclipses, etc.
Its "calm seas" echoed the steppes and vast fields of Little Russia (the old name given to Ukraine), like "seas of wheat" punctuated by silhouettes of mills whose wings recalled the sails of ships. And as for his "calm seas", the painter varied the effects of light: rising sun effect, midday effect, setting sun effect, twilight effect, moon effect, with moreover the variants of the seasons: winter snowy, spring and its green tones, summer and its yellow wheat, autumn and its orange tones. The sailors found their equivalents in the workers of the land... with this difference that the landscapes allowed the inclusion of female and childish characters, almost absent from the seascapes. In general, the characters in Aïvasovsky are details within his compositions, as if they were overwhelmed by the immensity of nature.
Our painting is representative of these works which are all tributes to the majesty of Ukrainian nature and to the work of the modest peasants in harmony with this same nature. It is a mental, romantic and ideal landscape, which does not exist, that the painter reconstructs in his studio according to his fantasized memories and his artistic "grammar". The small house with a thatched roof, at the foot of a gigantic tree, is found in several paintings by the master. The theme of the cart drawn by oxen is also frequent, especially when they represent the Chumake families - the Ukrainian and Crimean gypsies - who roll with their convoys and stop in the middle of the steppes to set up their makeshift camp there.
The fact that the signature is in French, that is to say with the use of the umlaut on the i and the "s" to transcribe the sound "z" (Aïvasovsky) attests that this painting was made in France or , at least, for the French market. Indeed, in 1864 the Russian master prepares his participation in the Paris Salon of 1865. He will exhibit there a seascape entitled Soleil couchant à Soudac (Crimea) whose description by the art critic Félix Jahyer, could apply to our painting , if it weren't for the presence of the sea: “The eyes can hardly fix, without being dazzled, this ardent sun which bathes in the sea the prodigious reflection of its dazzling rays; the shore is as if on fire and the parts that are not lighted are thrown back into a night that is all the deeper. »