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Ilya Repin

Born: Tchuguev, Ukraine, 1844
Died: Penates, Finland, 1930
Nationality: Ukrainian
Background: 

Military family

Studies: 

Imperial Art Academy (St Petersburg, 1864-76)

Career: 

1871 – Raising of Jairus’s Daughter (Russian Museum, St Petersburg) wins Major Gold Medal at Imperial Art Academy

1876 – settles in Moscow; frequent guest at Abramtsevo estate of art collector Savva Mamontov

1878 – joins the independent artistic association, The Wanders (Peredvizhniki)

1892 – professor at the reformed Academy

1907 – resigns from the Academy

Travels

Paris (1873-76)

Important Artworks: 

Ukrainian Girl by a Fence, 1876 (Belarus Art Museum, Minsk)

Self-Portrait, 1878 (Russian Museum, St Petersburg)

Religious Procession in Kursk Province, 1880-83 (Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow)

Ivan the Terrible and His Son Ivan, 1885 (Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow)

 

Contemporary painter Mikhail Nesterov wrote about the stature of Repin:

"With every year, and with every contemporary art fair staged by the Peredvizhniki, so the name of Ilia Efimovich Repin became dearer and dearer to us artists, and to Russian society. People eagerly awaited his paintings, and he - aware that his great talent obliged him to make every painting, every portrait, not just a personal triumph, but a glorification of his native art - he with matient persistence nurtured every piece...For every picture, every portrait painted by Repin was an event. Decades would pass, and people still remembered not only the very painting and the year of its appearance, but the exact place it occupied at the exhibition."

Mikhail V. Nesterov, Davnie dni. Vstrechi i vospominaniia. Moscow: Iskusstvo, 1959, 316. Quoted in Galina Churak, "The Contemporary Reception of Ilia Repin's Solo Exhibition of 1891," in Margaret Samu and Rosalind Blakesley, eds., From Realism to the Silver Age: New Studies in Russian Culture. Dekalb, IL: Northern Illinois University Press, 2014), 211.