analysis of the artwork

Topics: Expressionism, Oil painting, Emotion Pages: 2 (889 words) Published: February 4, 2014

For this assignment I decided to look at the work of Vrubel, called “Portrait of a Girl against a Persian Carpet”, 1886. This painting was created in Kiev, Ukraine. The painting right now belongs to the Museum of Russian Art in Kiev, Ukraine. The materials that were used are oil on canvas. It was known that Vrubel was influenced by French art and by the art of Romanticism; however, Vrubel’s paintings represent a distinctive turn from the realism towards symbolism (Early Twentieth-Century Russian Drama, p. 1). He mainly focused on the supernatural and mystical elements of art and had a very distinct style of painting, since his paintings reveal an emotional excess; an excess that pushes him towards boundless nature of feelings (Koznarsky, UofT, SLA331H1S, January 16, 2014). On the canvas there is a representation of a young girl who positioned against a carpet. She is placed in the center of the piece and she stares at the viewer with a very distinct expression of tragedy. She is sitting on her knees, but her legs are not shown because her oriental patterned dress covers them completely. It seems that the girl comes from a Middle Eastern country because she has big dark eyes and traditional classical features. Additionally, she has black hair that gets absorbed into surrounding the carpet that is right behind her. Her face comes out very fragile, and it does not look like childish face. The interpretation of the portrait can be even pushed further by saying that it is a doll and not a real person, since she is turned into a very precious object. However, she is still human because she has a pulse on her fragile neck (Koznarsky, UofT, SLA331H1S, January16, 2014). Another aspect that adds dramatic mood to the painting is the fact that she is surrounded with luxury; she has rings on her fingers, her dress looks very expensive and is made from a fine material and she has layers of pearls on her neck. Additionally, she holds a rose in one hand and a dagger in...
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