Wikipedia:Featured picture candidates/Emperor Paul I of Russia (1754-1801), by Vladimir Borovikovsky

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Emperor Paul I of Russia[edit]

Voting period is over. Please don't add any new votes. Voting period ends on 7 Jul 2013 at 07:54:43 (UTC)

Original – Portrait of Paul I of Russia (1754-1801), by Vladimir Borovikovsky
Reason-and some History
An excellent and encyclopedically valuable image of Emperor Paul I (1754-1801), painted ca. 1800 by Vladimir Lukich Borovikovsky (Владимир Лукич Боровиковский), the principal Russian portrait painter of the turn of the 19th century. The portrait shows Paul I characteristically himself, as he was known for his high enthusiasm for military pageantry and pomp. It also shows him wearing the famous Imperial Crown of Russia, and, even more significantly, shows him wearing the robes of the Grand Master of the Knights Hospitaller, a position he was elected to in October 1789 after Napoleon seized Malta from the knights in June of that same year. His membership was a notable element of his reign. The Priory of St. Petersburg had declared in September 1789 that the former Grand Master had betrayed the Order by selling Malta to Napoleon, and thus decided to elect the Emperor Paul I as their new leader. Thus was born the Russian tradition of the Knights Hospitaller. This image of Paul I also shows him wearing the collar of the Knights Hospitaller and the collar of the Order of St. Andrew, the highest order of chivalry of the Russian Empire and also, after being reinstated, of today's Russia. Paul I strove to make the government meet his ideals of knighthood. Such ideals are reflected in official art, of which, for Paul I, this painting may be the most exceptional representative. He wanted to form the Russian nobles into a sort of loyal chivalric class, an ideal which he almost seems to demonstrate here with his elevated posture and gesturing with the scepter of state. This image is of a good quality, and does an indispensable job of illustrating this interesting ruler and his singular character.
Articles in which this image appears
Paul I of Russia, List of Russian rulers, List of rulers of Estonia
FP category for this image
Vladimir Borovikovsky
  • Support as nominator --Indefatigable2 (talk) 07:54, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
  • Comment - This is below the minimum size requirements (not by much though) — Crisco 1492 (talk) 08:18, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
    • Agreed, but it's probably of sufficient quality and sharpness not to be a major factor. Ðiliff «» (Talk) 09:33, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
      • What's the size of the painting? — Crisco 1492 (talk) 12:37, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
        • The best I can guess is something larger with the proportions of 49x33.8 cms, as Borovikovsky did a similar portrait of Paul I with these dimensions. This portrait is currently at the State Russian Museum in St. Petersburg, I believe, but I cannot find enough information on it. Indefatigable2 (talk) 14:06, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
          • Not, in the end, that I think it really matters, as this is definitely the most descriptive and well-executed portrait of this figure that exists, in what is most probably its highest definition and best color balance to be found on the internet. Indefatigable2 (talk) 16:02, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
            • It does matter, in the end. The original size of the painting is proportional to the resolution we should expect. Also, merely being the best available on the internet does not automatically equate to being of FP quality. Cowtowner (talk) 18:34, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
              • Thank you, Cowturner. Precisely my point. If the original painting is like 10*6 cm, okay this resolution is certainly nice. If the painting is life size? The resolution isn't up to par. — Crisco 1492 (talk) 00:01, 29 June 2013 (UTC)
                • You are of course both right, "best on internet" is by no means a criterion for an FP; that would make for many poor FP's. However, in saying "not that I think it really matters," I was echoing Diliff, in that this image's color balance has been made effectively as best as possible and has been improved drastically over its former version; the image is very sharp with no artefacts that I can see, unlike the Horatio Nelson portrait that was just made an FP about a day ago, which, although of a higher resolution than this image, had some noticable digital artefacts when viewed on full size. Even though it is on the small side, I feel this image is sharp enough to pass muster, and is definitely large enough to make out the fine details. Even if the portrait in person were a larger one, I feel it should not be disqualified for this reason; if a better scan comes up in the future, we can, just like the voters on the Horatio Nelson portrait, agree to replace it in the future. But on its own I feel the color balance of the painting and the sharpness of the digital image negates the small deficiency in size. This was my thought. For me, this particular image left a significant impression, as it illustrates its subject in a way that is rare among portraits; it makes it 'fine' and a 'significant' contribution. That was why I felt it had high EV. Indefatigable2 (talk) 02:15, 29 June 2013 (UTC)
                  • I don't think anyone is doubting that this is a good picture and of high EV. We're concerned about the resolution. My experience with portraits of nobility (say, Napoleon) is that the portraits are generally a little larger than life. If that's true, this resolution (although quite sharp) is on the low side. — Crisco 1492 (talk) 02:28, 29 June 2013 (UTC)
                    • Good point Crisco. It could be that I'm having a lackluster moment (always a possibility), but I can't find dimensions for this painting... They're just not coming up in any of my searches on the Russian government art databases, so we may have to go by what we have here. In my opinion, I think this image meets the checklist. Consider this: hypothetically, would you prefer a larger image (like the Nelson one you put up) with some artifacts, or one that is smaller with less artifacts (such as this, it seems), the sharpness being the same on both? What would make the more worthwhile image? On another note, consider what user 'Stigmatella aurantiaca' said when voting on Nelson, it is 'good enough and the best for now.' Would you think that that is the case for this one, or do you believe it best to wait it out and see? I for one think we'll be hard pressed to see a scan as good as this anytime soon, and that this deserves an elevated status. Indefatigable2 (talk) 03:04, 29 June 2013 (UTC)
                      • One of the key differences between the Nelson portrait and this one is that Nelson portrait was 63.5 × 76.2 cm (i.e. nowhere near life size), so even at 1,500 * 2,000 or what have you it would have been reasonably big. As for this painting, I'm probably leaning weak support unless we find that it is quite small. — Crisco 1492 (talk) 03:08, 29 June 2013 (UTC)
                        • I FOUND IT I finally discovered the dimensions of the portrait, after looking though many pages in the virtual gallery of the Russian Museum. The portrait is housed currently in the Mikhailovsky Palace at the Russian Museum in St. Petersburg. It can be viewed in the virtual gallery hanging on the wall at this web page: Make your decisions. Indefatigable2 (talk) 04:02, 30 June 2013 (UTC)
  • Weak oppose: Good reproduction, beautiful painting. But considering the actual size of the painting (looks to be close to 2m tall) the lack of resolution is just too offputting. — Crisco 1492 (talk) 04:25, 30 June 2013 (UTC)
  • Support. Good reproduction. Colour balance and blacks seem accurate. Ðiliff «» (Talk) 09:33, 28 June 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose Basically on the grounds of the resolution (and the supposition of its size as well as the standards of the gallery). It's the best for now and valuable, but not good enough. Cowtowner (talk) 05:37, 29 June 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose per above discussion on resolution. – Kerαunoςcopiagalaxies 19:25, 1 July 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose per Cowtowner and Keraunoscopia--WingtipvorteX PTT 23:25, 2 July 2013 (UTC)

Not Promoted --Armbrust The Homunculus 08:00, 7 July 2013 (UTC)