The artists later formed their own group, the Society for Traveling and Exhibiting Art. In the late 1800’s, conflict became evident between three art styles, idealism, classicism and Ideological realism. Realism then took center stage up until the late 1900’s. This group would later dedicate their energies to populist themes set in realism.
Realism is a painting style that encompasses nature in its natural form. Nature is painted as it is with no objectivity to the stroke of the brush. It is a somewhat conservative art style. The first art paintings depicted in realism were dominated in themes based on the Russian Clergy, landscape and Russian peasantry.
18th Century Art: Ideological Realism
The Society for Traveling and Exhibiting Art Organization was known as Peredvizhniki in Russian language. It translates to itinerants or travelers in English. Peredvizhniki was the movement that caused the Russian art to follow realism from the mid eighteen century up to early 1900. Their goal was to enhance social reform and promote national consciousness.
Other famous artists that enhanced realism include Isaak Levitan, Mikhail Vrubel, Ivan Aivazovsky, Samuel Adlivankin, Abram Arkhipov, Alexey Venetsianov amongst many other artists. These artists would paint portraits and nature in its true form. The kind of art produced was inspired by everyday life and its occurrences. Some famous paintings of the1800’s include “A Kolkhoz Celebration”, “The Blue Expanse”, “The Year of 1918 in Petrograd” and “Stalin and Voroshirov in the Kremlin” amongst other paintings.
19th Century Art: Romanticism and Neoclassicism Art Styles
One artist in particular had a massive impact on Western European influenced art styles restrictions. He helped overturn realism styles and allow appreciation for romanticism and neoclassic styles. He did the famous painting “The Last Day of Pompeii”. His name was Karl Briullov, a master painter of fine art. The painting was done in a neoclassical and Romanticism style.
19th Century Art: The Slavic Revival
The Slavic revival period lasted throughout the late 19th Century. This was a period of revival in Russian national heritage with art acquiring a medieval nature that best represented the Russian culture and way of life. It reintroduced Ideological realism with more symbolism and beauty in the paintings. One noteworthy painter during this period was Victor Vasnetsov. Vasnetsov painted Russia in the Kievan History.
21st Century Art: A glimpse into Russian Contemporary Art
Contemporary art embraces all things objective. It is not subject to natural rules and goes beyond imagination. It may use abstract objects to portray life and use living things to depict modernization. Contemporary art is modern in all sense of the word. It was born in Russia out of personalizing art and moving away from Stalin’s norms and the soviet culture. During the reign of Stalin, contemporary art was seen as an act of defiance.
When Mikhail Gorbachev came into power, the rules changed and contemporary art could be publicly exhibited. He granted artists their freedom and removed all limitations placed by Stalin’s government. The aesthetic gap that had previously divided non-conformists and conformists of art disappeared and both worlds merged their art to create a combined theme of modern art.