“Street in Florence in the rain”, Konstantin Korovin – description of the painting

Description of the picture:

Street in Florence in the rain – Konstantin Alekseevich Korovin. 1888. Oil on canvas. 30 eight x nineteen cm

   In one thousand eight hundred and eighty-eight years, Konstantin Korovin set sail for a huge trip to Europe. Such an intense journey could be due to patron Savva Mamontov, who gathered around him non-standard, professional personalities. Korovin worked in the Mamontov’s Personal Opera, decorating the sets for performances. A specific tradition of the philanthropist was the export of people close in spirit and creativity abroad. In Europe, Korovin painted a series of fascinating paintings, among which there is a romantic, expressive Street in Florence.

   The narrow streets of one of the most beautiful cities in Italy, Florence, are represented by a Russian painter in a bold, sweeping technique. Korovin generally eschewed academicism, calling strict traditional canons “carrion.” The canvas is poured with paints in the most daring comparisons.

   The rough road of the street, going deeper into the picture, gleams with a moistened surface – most likely the rain has just come to an end (or is still coming). Two closed carriages move slowly along the road. The street is not crowded. You can see only the rarest, as if the figures of passers-by, who are scruffy from the rain, which the painter did not prescribe in detail. Along the streets towering houses with small windows tucked up. The distances between them are so close that it seems, if desired, the neighbors on the opposite sides can talk without raising the voice very much.

   But not a real environment, albeit very expressive, but a world of feelings, lures the viewer in this picture of Konstantin Korovin. In his creative way, the Russian painter chose impressionism, which put the value of the moment, the variability of the world, slightly tangible feelings and emotions at the forefront. Although the master himself opposed the fact that he was called an impressionist, because he considered himself an artist who practices “pure painting”.

   If you examine the presented canvas in detail, you can see how boldly the painter combines colors, juxtaposes them, emphasizes contrasts – the corners of houses, the roof of a carriage, etc. But it’s worth stepping back a couple of steps, all these detailed contrasts line up in a single harmonic plot, full of half tones and subtly noticed aspects. The texture of the colorful surface plays and shimmers. Certainly, the value of the picture in its color. The master’s manner practically “breathes” freedom – his stroke is sloppy and wide, with an uneven impulsive line.

   As for the mood of the canvas, it is fully consistent with the main slogan of Korovin – to demonstrate the beauty and satisfaction of life. So the artist’s inconspicuous rainy day breaks up into a myriad of beautiful drops that spilled onto the narrow street of Florence, turned it into a beautiful microcosm full of colors, air and life."