Nikolai Bogdanov-Belsky: The Schoolgirl Reading by Lamplight

bogdanov-belsky, nikolai petrov children sotheby's l18112lot9rzccen
Nikolai Petrovich Bogdanov-Belsky (1868-1945), The Schoolgirl, , signed in in Cyrillic l.l., oil on canvas, 158 by 119cm, 62 1/2 by 46 3/4 in., Image source: Sotheby’s.

Successful Exhibition 1917-1918

Nikolai Bogdanov-Belsky showed his paintings, including The Schoolgirl Reading by Lamplight, at the 46th Itinerant Exhibition in 1917-1918, which was a time of great social and political upheaval. According to Sotheby’s catalogue, the success was surprising:

‘We assumed that during the revolutionary events people would be indifferent to art and that we would struggle to sell anything. Fortunately, we were wrong… our exhibition was well-attended and many of the works sold. […] Connoisseurs flocked to the venue, so much so that the exhibition administrator could hardly keep up with the purchases, and all this despite the high prices.’ (quoted in V.Vegenov, ‘N.P. Bogdanov-Belsky u «peredvizhnikov»’, Russkii vestnik, no.13 (79), 1943, p.4).

13bogdanov-belsky, nikolai petrov children sotheby's l18112lot9rzccen
Nikolai Petrovich Bogdanov-Belsky, The Schoolgirl, (1868-1945), signed in in Cyrillic l.l., oil on canvas, 158 by 119cm, 62 1/2 by 46 3/4 in., Image source: Sotheby’s. (detail)

Sotheby’s catalogue says that Bogdanov-Belsky painted The Schoolgirl Reading by Lamplight “at the local school in Ostrovno in Tver Province, where he had settled in 1914, only visiting Petrograd in winter to work on portrait commissions.”  They quote Bogdanov-Belsky:

“I found the spontaneity and aptitude of peasant children so compelling that they became the natural subjects of my paintings”, the artist remarked.(quoted in N.Lapidus, Bogdanov-Belsky, Moscow, 2005, p.16). Quote from Sotheby’s catalogue

gbogdanov-belsky-nikolai-petrov-children-sothebys-l18112lot9rzccen jpg (JPEG Image, 1359 × 1702 pixels)
Nikolai Petrovich Bogdanov-Belsky, The Schoolgirl, (1868-1945), signed in in Cyrillic l.l., oil on canvas, 158 by 119cm, 62 1/2 by 46 3/4 in., Image source: Sotheby’s. (detail)

“I found the spontaneity and aptitude of peasant children so compelling that they became the natural subjects of my paintings”

Nikolai Petrovich Bogdanov-Belsky

Click for Enlarged Image:

Details:

  • Nikolai Petrovich Bogdanov-Belsky
  • 1868-1945
  • THE SCHOOLGIRL
  • signed in in Cyrillic l.l.
  • oil on canvas
  • 158 by 119cm, 62 1/2 by 46 3/4 in.
  • Image source: Sotheby’s

 

Thanks for Reading! 🙂

The End

6 Comments Add yours

  1. penwithlit says:

    Reblogged this on penwithlit and commented:
    Charming portrait!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, penwithlit! I appreciate your comment and reblog. 🙂

      Like

  2. Beautiful and I never knew of this artist, even when resided in Russia.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There are so many extraordinary Russian artists, but he is one of my favorite of all. Thanks for commenting! 🙂

      Like

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