Russian Museum
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Head of a Kyrgyz Convict. 1873

Perov Vasily,
Oil on сanvas
64,5 х 58,5

State Russian Museum


This portrait of a Kyrgyz convict dates to the heyday of Vasily Perov''s artistic career. Perov is considered a leading representative of critical realism in Russian visual art. After he created his famous series of genre pictures depicting societal issues and a brilliant gallery of portraits of his contemporaries, the painter started collecting art materials connected with the popular uprising led by Emelyan Pugachev. In 1873, in search of characteristic types for his future historical canvas, Perov travelled to the Urals and to the Orenburg Province. Among the many studies from life done during this time, this portrait of a Kyrgyz from the Russian Museum''''s collection is notable for its special depth. In this work, the artist finds the perfect balance between the appearance of the prisoner and the psychological state of a condemned man.

Author's Biography

Perov Vasily

Perov, Vasily Grigoryevich
1834, Tobolsk - 1882, Kuzminki (now part of Moscow)
Painter, genre artist, portraitist, history painter, teacher. Studied under Alexander Stupin at the Arzamas School of Art (1846-61). Fellow of the Imperial Academy of Arts in France (1862-64). Academician (1866). Professor (1870). Founding member of the Society of Travelling Art Exhibitions. Taught at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture (1871-82).

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