A special area in the art of Vasily Tropinin is occupied by portraits of children. For all his life devoted to creativity, he created more than twenty paintings on this subject. Childish images were especially sweet for the artist, because his main love and hope was his growing son. Tropinin writes with children musical instruments playing, reading, hugging animals, in all their openness and spontaneity.
Having become a famous portrait painter, Tropinin remained in serfdom with Mr. Morkov. In the Ukrainian estate, he worked as a home artist and servant. Servitude was painfully experienced by him, giving rise to hope for creative freedom. The impulse of liberty was not a custom-made image of the son of 1818 in a clean and sincere emancipation.
The artist painted the face of his son Arseny with particular enthusiasm. It is as if he reveals to the beholder his spiritual world. With sincere frankness, he shows a conviction in the bright calling of man. The contemplator opens the world of childhood dreams, a living and trusting Universe.
The boy’s head is lit by trembling golden beams. Recently, he frolic and amused himself - this is evidenced by a slightly disheveled shirt collar and disheveled curls. But now, forced to pose for his father, Arseny is thoughtful and serious. One can only guess where these deep restless eyes look.
The picture is unusually harmonious, enveloped in the love of the master. The child's face is graceful, gentle and noble. The boy’s poetic look in warm brownish shades easily erases in memory. It seems that when creating the picture Tropinin dreamed not of his release, but of the will of his son. Father’s aspirations never came true. But this work was recognized as one of the best in Russian painting, and "Portrait of a Son" still admires with unusual warmth.
Description Paintings Freedom Leading People