1881, Mikhailovskaya (Don Region) - 1944, Abramtsevo (outside Moscow)

Breads. Still-Life


Ilya Mashkov was a leading member of the Jack of Diamonds, a group of artists who attempted an original fusion of the devices of Paul Cézanne and the traditions of Russian folklore. Breads is one of Mashkov’s most famous paintings. Inspired by the provincial signboard, with its exaggerated and immobile «objectivity» conveying the sensation of wealth and repleteness, the artist was drawn to the physical forms of the loaves stacked up in objective piles. Transforming this life motif, Mashkov plays up the endless diversity and tones of the different kinds of breads and buns. As one art critic noted, despite the feast of different textures and forms, Mashkov’s still-life still smells more of turps, paints and varnish than icing. Russian Museum: From Icons to the Modern Times. Palace Editions, St Petersburg, 2015. P. 289.

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