In solidarity, the Metropolitan Museum of Art has put up in “Gallery 800” this painting by Arkhip Ivanovich Kuindzhi.
This scene shows a sunset over the river Dnieper, which originates west of Moscow and runs south into the Black Sea. Kuindzhi was born along the coast in Mariupol, when the Ukrainian city was part of the Russian Empire. The minimalist composition and dramatic light, color, and clouds exemplify the artist’s style. Earlier in his career, in the 1870s, the artist was associated with the Peredvizhniki (sometimes translated as the Wanderers), a pioneering independent exhibition group. In the 1890s, he taught landscape painting at the Academy of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg. Dismissed for supporting student protestors, he ultimately founded his own artists’ society. Today, Kuindzhi is celebrated in both Ukraine and Russia.