Paintings

Description of the painting by Valentin Serov “Bathing a horse”


At first glance, the picture is unpretentious and does not require any interpretation at all. A young man bathes a horse - what could be easier? And, probably, in the brush of any other artist this scene would have remained an ordinary sketch, unfinished and little artistic, which captured a random everyday scene.

Any other artist would have had it like that, but not Serov’s, because his brush made it possible to create a true masterpiece - from a visual and psychological point of view. Even a person unfamiliar with Serov’s work will understand that the picture is fraught with deep content, that which is hidden behind a seemingly ordinary sketch.

The very atmosphere of the picture is permeated by the author’s longing for youth, brightness of sensations.

Take a closer look: the working young man is in a hurry; his gaze is by no means aimed at the horse, which obediently stands and waits for washing. No, he looks somewhere in the distance - where his friends may bathe and frolic. The motives of freedom, liberty, and disobedience are implicitly set by the animal itself, which in most of us is associated precisely with these concepts, and the sea. The latter is quite calm, it is only slightly worried, and this gives the picture a note of pacification, making it not so gloomy.

The sky, however, begins to turn purple, but this is a sign of impending twilight, and not bad weather. So the boy’s work should soon come to an end; a couple of movements - and a person with an animal will rest. It should be noted that the author was equally successful both in characters and in the sea landscape, transmitted surprisingly accurately and vividly.

Of course, in order to inspire the viewer with the desired impression, Serov had to carefully consider the manner of writing, to make it more energetic. Only then, grateful connoisseurs of his work will feel the piercing longing of the artist for long gone happy days.





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