Red sunset - Arkhip Ivanovich Kuindzhi. 134.6 x 188 cm
This picture is one of the last, largest works of the artist. The canvas has a difficult fate, it was repeatedly resold until it was in the United States.
The picture has a second name - "Red Sunset on the Dnieper." It depicts a river landscape in the style typical of the later works of the master. This is a vast, large-scale landscape of a view of the river valley, captured at the very hour when the sun setting in the clouds colors everything around with a magical reddish-gold color.
In relation to the image, the viewer and the artist himself are on a raised platform, and the landscape seems to lie at the feet of people looking at the Dnieper valley. Most of the canvas is occupied by a sky of surprisingly golden color. Almost in the center of it is a large cloud that has an expressive complex shape. She, too, is painted in the sun's rays in the richest shades of red. Right in the center of the cloud, breaking through it with thin blurry rays, there is a hot, sparkling liquid gold sun. Due to the fact that it is covered by rather dense clouds, the disk of the star seems small, but very bright and just noticeably warm.
The earthly ground lying below is divided by a river ribbon into three unequal longitudinal stripes, and the far bank of the Dnieper merges into one maroon color spot with subtle silhouettes of buildings. The near shore is more “readable”, tall slender poplars, dimly distinguishable houses and other details are visible. All of them are made in a single, warm color scheme with a predominance of reddish, cherry and brownish shades.
But the most impressive thing in this picture is the river, the calm surface of which resembles a sheet of silver shiny metal. It clearly reflects the vibrating golden light of the sun. All the rest of the river on both sides of the solar path is flooded with the same warm soft light and color, like everything around in this picture.
In the ancient version of the Russian language, red was equated to beautiful, and the sun was revered as giving life to everything - both nature and man. According to critics, in this picture the artist showed himself as a real sun worshiper. Well, if you take into account the respect and love with which the master treated nature, you can understand why he managed such amazing landscapes. In each of his paintings literally one feels worship before the incredible beauty and power of mother nature.