Ivan Kramskoy

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Portrait of painter by Ilya Repin

Ivan Nikolayevich Kramskoy (1837 – 1887) Russian painter, famous mainly as a portraitist. He also was an art critic. Kramskoy was the intellectual leader of the Russian democratic art movement 1860-1880.[1]

In 1872, Kramskoy painted his masterpiece Christ in the Desert, and in 1873 the Portrait of Leo Tolstoy.

Kramskoy was a fascinating, driven, exquisitely talented man. He acutely and actively reacted to the most important events surrounding him and tried to serve his people with his art. He is meaningful not only as an artist, but as the man who laid the way to the flourishing of Russian art represented by Ilya Repin, Serov, Surikov, Vasnetsov and other outstanding Russian masters.[2]

Portrait gallery

Kramskoy Unknown-woman.jpg
Unknown Woman, 1883. This is the most intriguing and well-known painting by Kramskoy. It shows a haughty, exquisitely dressed woman riding in her open carriage on the Anichkov bridge in St. Petersburg. Stasov (art critic from that time) said of the painting, "She is a coquette in a carriage... Over time, however, the Unknown Woman has become a symbol of sophistication, beauty and spirituality; the Russian Madonna." (Ibidem)

See also

Portrait of Empress Maria Fiodorovna

External links


  1. Ivan Kramskoi
  2. Ivan Kramskoy