Description of the painting by Orest Kiprensky “Portrait of Olenina”

Description of the painting by Orest Kiprensky “Portrait of Olenina”

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This work was created in a difficult time for Kiprensky. The artist, a native of serfs, always easily found ill-wishers in high society. After returning from Italy, Kiprensky was accused of killing a model, and although nothing was proved, this incident cast a shadow on his career. In addition to this, rumors circulated about his connection with a ten-year-old girl while living in Rome. The artist desperately worried about all these rumors, locked himself in - which absolutely did not prevent him from creating wonderful paintings.

A magnificent master of portraiture, Kiprensky painted many noble and famous people, his contemporaries, and he created to order, and simply for the love of art. Anna Olenina, daughter of the head of the Public Library and the President of the Academy of Fine Arts, was the love of Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin, and he devoted several of his poems to her. Pushkin even intended to marry her, but the wedding was upset for unknown reasons.

Kiprensky perfectly conveyed the character of his model - young and naive, flirty and playful, but at the same time incredibly self-confident and dignified girl. Venison is depicted in a dress fashionable at that time with a narrow bodice and lush sleeves, a silk scarf is thrown over her shoulders, a voluminous hairstyle is laid with airy curls, and a small earring is in her ear.

This portrait was the last work of Kiprensky in his homeland - after which he, finally disappointed in his surroundings and in secular society, returned to Italy. The second trip to Europe was unsuccessful for the artist - his former glory was quickly forgotten, failures haunted him, moreover, Kiprensky changed the style of his painting. Light and air seemed to have left her, the work became darker. But the Portrait of Olenina remained for centuries as a vivid evidence of the heyday of the artist.

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