CRIMEA IN RUSSIAN ART – the July preview

I’m back!  It was 18 days of travel, 4,560 photos and 24 hand-written chapters for this blog (with two more pending in my head). It was exciting, gorgeous, challenging, different, eye-opening, beautiful, tiring, inspiring, heart-breaking, cold, wet, relaxing, testing, comfortable and frustrating — all in all, a trip of a lifetime.

I am not the worldliest of travelers but I have covered some ground in North America and a decent bit of Europe in my life this far, and this… this was something else. Maybe because I had no expectations. Despite hundreds of stories from family, friends and coworkers I had no idea what to expect for me. While on an international scale I had crossed countries and oceans, in Russia or even in our “near abroad” I had never ventured out past Moscow, Saint Petersburg and dacha (country house). I couldn’t even imagine it — this twilight zone of dealing with “foreigners” in my “native” (Russian) language. Of being treated like a “regular” (a Russian tourist) when I was the furthest thing from one (generally iffy outside of the Moscow Center). Craving some down-to-earth adventure while at the core remaining elitist and spoiled to the core in the area that is anything but, BUT one that lives on systemically catering exactly to “my kind”. I went for it. On a whim.

And it was Amazing.

Jump-up-and-down Amazing. Scare-my-colleagues-with-my-enthusiasm Amazing. I-need-to-go-back-now Amazing.

I wonder if this is how the Muscovites and the Pitertsy of yore felt spending time in Crimea. Royals, nobles, war heroes, poets and painters flocked there in droves for centuries. Romanov, Pushkin, Aivazovsky. While I sort through my notes and pix, do take a look at how they the artistically-gifted ones saw the land that captured my heart:

Ivan Aivazovsky, Brig Mercury Attacked by Two Turkish Ships 1892

Ivan Aivazovsky, Brig Mercury Attacked by Two Turkish Ships

Konstantin Bogaevsky, Old Crimea

Konstantin Bogaevsky, Old Crimea

Nikanor Chernitsov, A View in Crimea at River Kacha

Konstantin Korovin, Gurzuf in the Evening

Konstantin Korovin, Gurzuf in the Evening

Arkhip Kuindzhi, The Sea

Arkhip Kuindzhi, The Sea

 Vladimir Orlovskiy , Sunny day. Sea coast. Crimea.

Vladimir Orlovsky , Sunny day. Sea coast. Crimea.

Ivan Shishkin, Crimean Landscape

Ivan Shishkin, Crimean Landscape

Apollinary Vasnetsov, Crimean View

Apollinary Vasnetsov, Crimean View

Peter Vereshhagin,  Crimea, Mountains

Peter Vereshhagin, Crimea, Mountains

Maximilian Voloshin, From the top of the Meganom

Maximilian Voloshin, From the Meganom

12 thoughts on “CRIMEA IN RUSSIAN ART – the July preview

    • I love the almost mythical drama of the 2nd. The last one is by Voloshin, who was almost a lifelong resident of Koktybel (the area near which this work was painted) and its greatest bard, in both painting and poetry.

    • Oh, and I took my super-old lappy with me (didnt want to risk having the new light one damaged or stolen), and that was just so that I dump my thousands of iphone photos. So I simply would go to a cafe with my notebook and spend 7 hrs writing. It was originally around 100 pages, whittled down to 60 or so.

    • See, this is fascinating to me – this is definitely my least favorite peace here and I wrestled with an idea of including a work by Korovin (he did quite a few – you can Google Image his name and Crimea or Gurfuz/Hurfuz) into the line-up, it is SO far from my aesthetic, but then decided that I should diversify and he was one of the more prominent Crimea artists, and brings an entirely different sensibility to the depiction of this area. So glad I did!
      And I missed you too, Avocado 🙂

    • HAHA! I appreciate the enthusiasm. I am having an early day today (830 pm and I am about to shut off my computer) so I will go home and start typing up chapter 1 :)))))))

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