Apollinary Vasnetsov

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Apollinary Vasnetsov. Portrait by his brother, Viktor. (1878)

Apollinary Mikhaylovich Vasnetsov (Russian: Аполлина́рий Миха́йлович Васнецо́в; July 25 (August 6 N.S.), 1856 in the village of Riabovo, Vyatka Governorate – January 23, 1933 in Moscow) was a Russian painter and graphic artist whose elder brother was the more famous Viktor Vasnetsov. He specialized in scenes from the medieval history of Moscow.

Vasnetsov was a painter and a graphic artist. He did not receive a formal artistic education. He studied under his older brother Viktor Vasnetsov, the famous Russian painter. From 1883, he and his brother lived and worked in Abramtsevo where he fell under the influence of Vasily Polenov. In 1898–1899, he traveled across Europe. In addition to epic landscapes of Russian nature, Apollinary Vasnetsov created his own genre of historical landscape reconstruction on the basis of historical and archaeological data. His paintings present a visual picture of medieval Moscow. He was a member of the Association of Traveling Art Exhibitions (Peredvizhniki) from 1899, and an academician from 1900. He became one of the founders and supervisors of the Union of Russian Artists.

Early life[edit]

The future painter had three elder and two younger brothers. The only sister died in the age of four month. His father played an important role in upbringing and education of his sons. He taught them to love nature, told a lot about birds and animals life. The death of his father in 1870 was for him a terrible blow.

The Caucasus and the Ural[edit]

In 1890 he made a journey across the North of Russian Empire. Beautiful sights of Siberia and Urals were snapped by Apollinary Vasnetsov in the large number of his canvases:

  • Forest on the mount of Blagodat, Mid Urals (1890)
  • Boreal forest in Ural (1890)
    Boreal forest in the Urals mountaing by Vasnetsov Apollinary
  • Mountain lake in Ural (1892)
    Kama by Vasnetsov Apollinary
  • Steppes of Orenburg (1895)
  • "Koma" (1895)

In 1895 Vasnetsov went to the Caucasus. He was deeply impressed by the beauty of the hoary Caucasus mountains. Whilst there he climbed the glacier Elbrus, visited Tiflis and lived in Darial Gorge. He created a great number of his sketches during this period:

  • View on Elbrus from Bermomut (1895)
  • Red Cliffs in Kislovodsk (1896)
  • Elbrus before sunrise (1897)
  • Darial (1897)

In 1890 He made a journey across Europe, visiting France and Italy, where he studied the works of famous masters

In the beginning of 1920 Committee of Archeology (the predesseror of the Community of Saving of Art Monuments) invited Apollinary Vasnetsov and some other painters (among them was Vikentii Trofimov) to draw old places of Voronezh.

A minor planet 3586 Vasnetsov, discovered by Soviet astronomer Lyudmila Zhuravlyova in 1978 is named after Viktor Vasnetsov and Apollinary Vasnetsov.[1]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Schmadel, Lutz D. (2003). Dictionary of Minor Planet Names (5th ed.). New York: Springer Verlag. p. 301. ISBN 3-540-00238-3. 


  • Apollinary Vasnetsov by Vasnetsova, Yekaterina & Schmidt, Igor (eds.), Izobrazitelnoye Iskusstvo, Moscow, 1980, (Russian/English), Book ID V 1121 31.
  • Great painters by Gordeeva M., "Direct media", Kiev, 2011, (Russian)

External links[edit]