Kuindzhi – “Birch Grove”
AI Kuindzhi was called “Artist of Light” by IE Repin. Indeed, Kuindzhi had no equal in the depiction of the play of light and shadow. His famous painting “Birch Grove”, painted in 1879, is a confirmation of this.
In the painting “Birch Grove” Kuindzhi managed to create the image of a radiant, sparkling day. It is surprisingly quiet and joyful around. They grow freely and freely in a clearing of birch trees. Having started a merry game, merry “bunnies” jump on their white trunks. The artist so skillfully depicted a corner of a grove, immersed in sunlight, that it seems as if you hear the rustling of leaves, chirping of grasshoppers in soft grass, chirping of birds …
The upper edge of the canvas “cuts off” the crowns of birches, but their individual branches remain in our field of vision. The light pattern of their emerald greenery contrasts with the dark green of the birches in the background of the picture – and this enhances the feeling of brightness, radiance of a summer day.
Then a stream catches our eye. It “leads” into the depths of the picture, into the forest, lost in a mysterious haze, and gives a feeling of freshness and coolness. You can feel not only the charm of the surrounding landscape, but also its powerful earthly strength. In the distance we see the dark silhouette of a forest. The artist does not highlight its details; on the contrary, he generalizes the silhouettes into one heavy mass, thickens the color.
Kuindzhi achieves a strong decorative effect with the help of a well-chosen composition, clean, sonorous colors and precisely selected contrasts. Perhaps everything in this landscape is built on contrasts: the dense shadow of the greenery of the distant forest contrasts with the white, almost luminous trunks of birches and the dazzling blue sky.
In the painting “Birch Grove” Kuindzhi not only showed the charm and beauty of Russian nature, but with the help of original artistic means conveyed to us his sense of admiration for a simple Russian landscape. Year of painting: 1901.
Dimensions of the painting: 163 x 115 cm.
Writing technique: oil.
Gallery: State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia.