In this post I am going to introduce a Russian painter of Jewish origin… Isaac Levitan.
He may not be the most famous of all outside of Russia… yet I chose to write about him because he is one of my personal favorites. His paintings catch my eye because they seem to be a perfect representation of the lyrical charm of the Russian landscape. Although people are usually not present in his canvases, Levitan’s work still speaks of humanity, carrying an inexplicable sensibility.
What can be more tragic than to feel the grandeur of the surrounding beauty and to be able to see in it its underlying mystery… and yet to be aware of your own inability to express these large feelings.
Born in Lithuania, Russian Empire, in 1860, Isaac Levitan was one of Russia’s most influential landscape artists. Although his youth was marked by poverty and the death of his parents, he was awarded with a scholarship at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture as an aid to complete his studies, due to his remarkable talent…
His entire life was dedicated to the arts… producing landscapes which were later recognized as the finest masterpieces of Russian art. Already a highly recognized and respected painter, he spent his last years in Crimea, where he died of a terminal illness at age 39… leaving behind more than a thousand paintings, watercolors, pastels, graphics, and illustrations.
Click on any image to flip through the gallery.
Today, his paintings can be found in many of Russia’s museums, including the Tretyakov, never ceasing to reflect the eternal beauty of the Russian nature.
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