Portrait of Elena Alexandrovna Naryshkina, Borovikovsky – description

Description of the picture:

Portrait of Lena Alexandrovna Naryshkina – Vladimir Lukich Borovikovsky. Canvas, oil. 72.8 x 59.6 cm

The Russian painter Vladimir Lukich Borovikovsky is known for his countless portraits, ceremonial and chamber, depicting military and municipal figures, high-ranking courtiers and, of course, the tsars and empresses themselves.

But in portraits of women, we are still impressed with the mastery of the creator, his ability to show the subtlety and sensitivity of female nature. One of such masterpieces is “Portrait of Lena Alexandrovna Naryshkina”, painted by the artist in one thousand seven hundred and ninety-nine years.

Lena is only fourteen years old, but the non-standard, striking beauty of the girl stops her gaze and implies a beautiful lady in the future.

She is dressed simply, but luxuriously – a snow-white dress of heavenly color, a light cape, a sleeve is intercepted by a string of pearls, curls of curly hair are scattered on the shoulders. Directly leaning on a pedestal, she looks directly at the viewer with her heavy, unusual and mysterious gaze. Beautiful, delicate roses next to a woman symbolize youth and purity.

And, of course, the landscape against the backdrop of a model. Borovikovsky uses nature in portraits to convey the general mood of the picture – poetic, slightly sad, chamber.

Who is this young baby?

At the age of fifteen, Lena Naryshkina became a maid of honor at court, then she was married off to the offspring of A.V. Suvorov – Arkady Alexandrovich Suvorov. The families of the Naryshkins and Suvorovs were friends for a long time, and therefore the dream of marrying the kids was mutual.

The marriage was not very happy, but it lasted eleven years, and when Arkady Suvorov died in one thousand eight hundred and eleven years, Lena Alexandrovna with 4 children went to Europe.

The princess is only 20 5 years old, she is beautiful, charming, educated, she has a beautiful timbre of voice and musical data. At the courts in Europe, she draws attention to herself with her own beauty, liveliness of reason, and courtesy.

A fact of her life is known: the Italian composer Gioacchino Rossini included a cantata, which he had written earlier in honor of Lena Naryshkina’s name day, in the second act of the opera The Barber of Seville. And Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin intended the poem to her “Given her memory …”.

She has many admirers, but she is engaged in children and only after twelve years of widowhood she marries a second time, for Prince Vasily Andreyevich Golitsyn.

They lived the rest of their lives in Odessa, where she was buried in one thousand eight hundred and fifty-five. According to her contemporaries, Lena Alexandrovna, until the last days, retained a clear consciousness, attractiveness, was a pleasant and longed-for interlocutor.

And now, peering into the portrait, you feel that awe and inspiration of Borovikovsky, who wrote this young purity and freshness of the divine beauty of the girl."