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Nicholas Roerich

( Artist)

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Biography Nicholas Roerich
photo Nicholas Roerich
Nicholas Roerich, an outstanding artist, scientist, social activist, was born September 27, 1874 in St. Petersburg. Roerich's ancestors belonged to an ancient Danish-Norwegian family, moved to Russia in the first half of XVIII century. Father of Nicholas Roerich, the owner of notary's office, was a man of great culture, with a wide range of interests. Roerich's house was frequented prominent scientists.
Since childhood, the future artist is fond of reading history books, loves to listen to old stories, dreams of traveling. The boy develops imaginative, inquisitive interest in ancient Russia. In my school years he participated in excavations of burial mounds, at the same time he manifested the ability to draw.

In 1893, Roerich finishes school and becomes both a student of the Academy of Arts and Faculty of Law, University. However, the riddle of his distant history of concern remain, and the young man listening to a lecture on history and philology faculty; summer Roerich holds the excavation as a member of the Russian Archaeological Society.

Being introduced in 1895 with In. V. Stasov, who headed the art department at the Public Library, Roerich began a serious study of the ancient chronicles, books, reading and writing.

Important role in shaping the talent of the young artist played his teacher A. I. Kuindzhi, in the workshop which Roerich began seriously working on landscapes from nature creates the first historical composition. In 1897, Roerich among other students Kuindzhi left the Academy in protest against the dismissal of his favorite teacher and continues to work initiated a series of paintings on themes of life of the ancient Slavs, known as "Beginning of Russia. Slavs.

The idea of a series of highly original. Roerich is not seeking to recreate certain historical events. And although he resurrects the past on the basis of scientific evidence of archeology, the essence of his work is not in the reconstruction of a distant era, but in a poetic incarnation. In Roerich's work is characterized by imaginative, emotional perception of antiquity, the ability to convey a distinctive flavor to the ancient era.

From the first works in this series: "The messenger. Restore born on race "(1897, TG), converge Elders (1899, RM)," Hike "(1899, whereabouts unknown) - the most successful first. Through the twilight colors, flickering moonlight artist expresses the mood of anxiety of impending danger, the presentiment of bad news. Two other works "Idols" (1901, RM), and "overseas visitors" (1901, GTG; version 1902, RM) Roerich created in Paris, where for some time engaged in the workshop historical painter Fernand Cormon.

. In "Idol" shows the pagan temple: for the fence with the skulls of sacrificial animals, including quaint stone idols, in thought wandered elder-vedun, the canvas comes alive world of Slavic beliefs, there is an atmosphere of ancient mysteries
. This work on the pictorial language differs significantly from earlier. It appears generalized form, a clear picture, completeness, internal consistency of the composition.

New search imagery is particularly evident in the painting "The overseas guests, all the strength of presenting a color gift of the artist. Picturesque poem in jubilant colors resurrects an era of discovery of unknown countries. On the blue sea, green islands floating among the fabulous boat Vikings. Rapid wind fills the sails of multi-colored, with a cry of rushing to meet the white gulls. Working on a painting, Roerich peculiar uses techniques of folk art, is making a large decorative, the sonority of colors, creates a lively, festive work.

. In 1901 the artist returned to Russia and continues to work on Slavic theme: "Town" (1902, RM), "Alexander Nevsky strikes Birger Jarl" (1904, RM), "Build a City" (1902, TG), "Slavs on the Dnieper "(1905, RM) and other
. Several special place is set up in 1901 painting "Evil" (SRM). The artist wrote a deserted beach, huge boulders under a cold air gloomily darkened silhouettes of ravens, causing evil foreboding.

. In the summer of 1903-1904 years Roerich and his wife made a trip around old cities, studying architecture, painting, applied art, familiar with the folklore, folk dances
. The result was a trip picturesque series of ninety paintings, in which the artist depicted monuments of ancient Russian architecture. In fine art works on a deep understanding of the nature of ancient monuments, enthusiastic attitude to the inspired creations of ancient architects. Simultaneously Roerich out in print in popularizing the ancient Russian art, calling for the protection of monuments of great national treasure.

. Since 1906, Roerich is working on a cycle of paintings, legends of human history: "Stone Age" (1910, whereabouts unknown), "Pomoryane
. Morning "(1906, Art Gallery in Gorlovka), a human forefathers" (1911, whereabouts unknown, later repeated - RM). Typically for this series of painting "a human forefathers". Roerich depicted playing the flute Slav, surrounded by verdant hills on peacefully settled bears, charmed magic sounds. In this cycle Roerich symbolically expressed his philosophical views related to the educational ideas. Moderntouristsareusuallylookingforopportunitiestomeetandmingle

nomu society, he contrasts the ideal of the ancient world, where people live under the laws of goodness and love, in harmonious unity with nature. The artist believed that the way to transform the reality lies in the moral improvement of man and that this goal should be a bright, cleansing art.

. During these years Roerich wrote a number of distinctive historic landscapes, reflecting the pantheistic representation of the ancient Slavs, inspired by nature, believed in the mystical forces that affect a person's life
. These are the pictures: "Messenger" (1914, RM), "Star Runes" (1912, whereabouts unknown), "Battle in the Heavens" (1909, England; repetition - 1912, SRM). Cloths these are extremely emotional, deep poetry, evokes associations with fabulous images.

. And, finally, in the prewar years in Roerich's works appear with the complex symbolism of the image, fantastic scenes, intense expression of feeling, a generalized pictorial language
. This - "Snake Creek" (1913, Pskov museum), Grad doomed "(1914, whereabouts unknown), they reflected a premonition of the tragic events. Thus, in the movie "City of the doomed" the artist depicted a white city, around which shrinks the giant ring of fire boa.

Of great interest is the work of Roerich in the theater over the sketches of scenery. Particularly significant was the play design M. Maeterlinck's "Sister Beatrice" (1914), drama Mr.. Ibsen's "Peer Gynt" (1912), Cam H. A. Rimsky-Korsakov's The Maid of Pskov (1909) and A. P. Borodin's "Prince Igor" (1914). Roerich managed to pass the national coloring action, emphasize the emotional mood of the performance. Identity and poetry differs clearance ballet Stravinsky's Rite of Spring "(1913), which Roerich wrote the libretto on the life of the ancient Slavs.

. Roerich and works in the genre of monumental painting, performing sketches for paintings in civil buildings and churches
. The most original in conception and the decorative beauty - painted church of. spirit in Talashkino (1911).

Revolution artist meets a sympathetic. Roerich is a member of the Commission on the Arts, established in March 1917 on the initiative and under the chairmanship of a. M. Gorky. In May 1917, in connection with severe lung disease, artist forced to leave the Karelian isthmus. In the spring of next year upon the occurrence of intervention he was abroad.

. In 1918, Roerich traveled throughout Finland, Norway, Denmark, England, with an exhibition of his works, and in 1920 went to America, where his work enjoyed especially great success
. Here the master is developing a broad educational activities: promoting Russian art, . organizes Art University, . Artists Union, . International Art Center "Crown of Peace", . purpose of which - the cultural cooperation between the peoples of different countries,
. In 1923 at the initiative of fans of the Russian painter of talent to create a museum-H. K. Roerich.

In the same year the artist leaves America. In Italy and Switzerland, he went to France, and thence by sea - to the East, having decided to implement a long-standing dream - to travel to India and Central Asia. Unusual expedition lasted for five years. With Roerich crossed the Himalayas, and proceeded to inaccessible areas of Central Asia in May 1926, travelers crossed the border and visited the USSR in Moscow. Roerich met with a. V. Lunacharsky and gave the Soviet Government a few of his works. Summer of 1926 the artist - in the Altai, in Siberia and then went to the Mongolian People's Republic of Korea and then across the Gobi Desert, Tsaidam, Tibet across the Himalayas - to the initial point of the route - the city of Darjeeling. Travelers are many dangers lay in wait, repeatedly obstructed. During the forced hibernation in the highlands of Tibet, they nearly died from cold and hunger. But on the whole way Roerich continued to work even in the most difficult circumstances, as a result of the expedition he brought about five hundred paintings and sketches. Enormous and scientific achievements were: thoroughly studied monuments of art, ancient manuscripts, rituals and traditions, religious cults. In order to process the collected materials Roerich in 1928 in the Kullu valley (Western Himalayas) is organizing the Himalayan Research Institute. Since 1930, after a brief trip to America, Kullu valley has become a permanent place of residence of the Roerich family, and here the artist come prominent writers and statesmen of India.

. Roerich's works, created in India are extremely diverse
. In the 20-ies he was working on a cycle, directly related to the study of ancient Eastern philosophy and ethics issues. Roerich creates images of those who thought the preachers of eternal standards of morality - Mohammed, Buddha, Christ, philosophers, Confucius, Lao-tzu and other. This series of similar religious paintings - "Compassion", "Madonna Labor. Occupies a special place canvas "The phenomenon of time". Master depicted a giant head of a sage, giving facial features a portrait likeness s. I. Lenin. The name of the leader of the Russian Revolution the artist linked the idea of the release of the East.

However, the main work of Roerich 20-40-ies - it is landscapes, which tend to have large philosophical content. They Roerich extols the greatness, eternal sublime beauty of nature, which ennobles man. Eastern Himalayas painter devoted more than six hundred works and created a colorful epic poem about these mountain ranges. Among them are such paintings as "Remember!" (1945, RM), "The Himalayas. Glaciers "(1937, RM)," The Himalayas, Nanda Devi (1941, RM).

Works Roerich these years filled with tempera. In this technique the artist is most clearly expressed his paintings searches. Fabrics are different sonority of color, often taken in contrast ratio in an intense emotional impact. With decorative colors are combined laconic clear line, clear and harmonious composition.

. In the "Stronghold of Tibet, Roerich organically combines landscape and architecture of ancient monuments of the East:" Lhasa "(1942, RM), Stupa Ladakh" (1941, RM), "Tibetan Monastery" (1942 ^ RM), "Royal Monastery
. Tibet "(1932, TG). Often, works of art depicted Roerich, linked to ancient superstitions, and have a symbolic meaning. This is a series dedicated to the Maitreya, the Buddha of the future, which is destined to bring happiness to the Earth. One of the characteristic works of this cycle is a canvas "Maitreya Winner" (1925, Gorky Art Museum), where, along with the image of the deity carved on the cliff, there is a symbolic image - silhouette of a rider in the clouds. A number of studies Roerich depicts Indian Gods Buddha and Krishna.

Interested in painting and folk rituals. In one of the most poetic scenes, "Lights on the Ganges" (1945, RM), the artist gave the ancient divination. In the blue twilight woman lets the water lights in order for them to predict the movement of their own destiny. In these works fine handed flavor of India, features the life of the people who became friends of the artist.

Roerich is not limited to creative activities, he is a major public work, is a member of the forty-cultural organizations in the world. One of the things that the artist was a famous "Roerich Pact" - an agreement by which valuable monuments should remain untouched during the war. The outcome of the struggle for the introduction of life "Covenant" was the final act of the International Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, signed in 1954 in The Hague and has been ratified by thirty-nine countries.

. He died in India
. In place of cremation in the Kullu valley is a monument with the inscription "13 December 1947 there were burnt body of Nicholas Roerich - a great Russian friend of India". Ten years later, his son Yuri arrived in the USSR and brought a large collection of works by his father, bequeathed by the artist of his homeland.

. Unofficial page
  • Site of the Museum of N
    . K. Roerich Museum in New York (in six languages). Voluminous biography, picture gallery, information on museum survey exhibition, a bibliography.
  • Very biography N
    . K. Roerich and a selection of his paintings on the portal "Culture of Russia".

  • 7 works H. K. Roerich can be found in the section "Russian Art" on a private page, George Mitrevski (Auburn University, USA).

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