Monday, December 26, 2011

About Victor Borisov-Musatov


Victor Musatov was born in Saratov, Russia. His father was a minor railway official who had been born as a serf. In his childhood he suffered a spinal injury that made him humpbacked for the rest of his life. In 1884 he entered Saratov real school, where his skills as an artist were discovered by his teachers Fedor Vasiliev and Konovalov.

He was enrolled in the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and design in 1890, transferring the next year to the Imperial Academy of Arts in Saint-Petersburg, where he was a pupil of Pavel Chistyakov. The damp climate of Saint-Petersburg was not good for Victor's health and in 1893 he was forced to come back to Moscow and re-enroll to the Moscow School of painting, sculpturing and architecture. 

His earlier works like May flowers, 1894 were labeled decadent by the school administration, which sharply criticized him for making no distinction between the girls and the apple trees in his quest for a decorative effect. The same works however were praised by his peers, who considered him to be the leader of the new art movement.

In 1895 Victor once again left Moscow School of painting, sculpturing and architecture and enrolled in Fernand Cormon's school in Paris. He studied there for three years, returning in summer months to Saratov. 

He was fascinated by the art of his French contemporaries, and especially by the paintings of "the father of French Symbolism" Pierre Puvis de Chavannes and by the work of Berthe Morisot.

Borisov-Musatov was a member of the Union of Russian Artists and one of the founders and the leader of the Moscow Association of Artists, a progressive artistic organization that brought together Pavel Kuznetsov, Peter Utkin, Alexander Matveyev, Martiros Saryan, Nikolai Sapunov, and Sergei Sudeikin.

The most famous painting of that time is The Pool, 1902. The painting depicts two most important women in his life: his sister, Yelena Musatova and his bride (later wife), artist Yelena Alexandrova. The people are woven into the landscape of an old park with a pond.

Another famous painting is The Phantoms. 1903 depicting ghosts on the steps of an old country manor. The painting was praised by the contemporary Symbolist poets Valery Bryusov and Andrey Bely.

In 1904 Borisov-Musatov had a very successful solo exhibition in a number of cities in Germany, and in the spring of 1905 he exhibited with Salon de la Society des Artistes Fran├žais and became a member of this society.

The last finished painting of Borisov-Musatov was Requiem. Devoted to the memory of Nadezhda Staniukovich, a close friend of the artist, the painting may indicate Borisov-Musatov's evolution towards the Neo-classical style.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Taisia Afonina Paintings


Taisia Kirillovna Afonina - Soviet, Russian painter and watercolorist, lived and worked in Leningrad, a member of the Saint Petersburg Union of Artists, considered as one of the brightest representatives of the Leningrad school of painting. Taisia Kirillovna Afonina was born May 13, 1913 in the city Nikolaev, in Crimea, Russian Empire, within the family of master Shipyard "Navel".

In 1931 Taisia Afonina graduated from nine-year school in city Taganrog, and came to Leningrad to get art education. In 1932-1936 she engaged first in the evening classes for working youth, then in the preparatory categories at the Russian Academy of Arts.

In 1936 after preparatory classes she was adopted at the first course of Painting Department of the Leningrad Institute of Painting, Sculpture and design, where she studied of Mikhail Bernstein, Victor Oreshnikov, and Pavel Naumov.

In 1941 after the beginning the Great Patriotic warTaisia Afonina along with little san and mother evacuated first in city Ostashkov, then in city Vishniy Volochek, then in city Lugansk, Ukrain. In 1943, after the liberation of the German fascists Lugansk, Taisia Afonina involved in rebuilding the city, teaches drawing and painting in Lugansk Art School. 

In autumn 1943 with a group of artists Taisia Afonina rides into city Krasnodar draw club before awarding medals to parents died young heroes - members of the underground anti-fascist Komsomol organization named ″Young Guard″, which fought against the Nazis in the occupied city Krasnodar, the feat that he finds the whole country.

Friday, December 9, 2011

About Parrot Origins and evolution



Researchers are regarding about the origins of parrots. Psittaciforme diversity in South America and Australasia suggests that the order might have evolved in Gondwanaland, centered in Australasia. The scarcity of parrots in the fossil record, however, presents difficulties in proving so.

A single 15 mm fragment from a large lower bill, found in deposits from the Lance Creek Formation in Niobrara County, Wyoming, had been thought to be the oldest parrot fossil and is presumed to have originated from the Late Cretaceous period that makes it about 70 million years old. There have been studies, though, that establishes that this fossil is almost certainly not from a bird, however from a caenagnathid theropod or a non-avian dinosaur with a birdlike beak.

It is now generally assumed that the Psittaciformes, or their common ancestors with variety of related bird orders, were present somewhere in the world around the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event, some 65 mya. If so, they probably had not evolved their morphological autapomorphies yet, but were generalized arboreal birds, almost like similar to today's potoos or frogmouths.

Though these birds are a phylogenetically challenging group, they appear at least closely to the parrot ancestors than as an example the modern aquatic birds. The present-day combined proof is widely in support of the hypothesis of Psittaciformes being "near passerines"; i.e. they actually certainly belong to the radiation of mostly land-living birds that emerged in close proximity to the K-Pg extinction.

They have been variously allied to groups such as falcons, songbirds, trogons, woodpeckers, as also as "Coraciiformes", hawks and owls, and the puzzling moosebirds. This looks to be by and large correct. Other proposed relationships, such as to pigeons, are considered more spurious today.

Europe is that the origin of the first presumed parrot fossils, which date from about 50 million years ago (mya). The climate there and then was tropical, consistent with the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum. Initially, a neoavian named Mopsitta Tanta, uncovered in Denmark's Early Eocene

Fur Formation and dated to 54 mya, was assigned to the Psittaciformes; it was described from a single humerus. However, the rather nondescript bone is not unequivocally Psittaciformes, and more recently it absolutely was out that it may rather belong to a newly-discovered ibis of the genus Rhynchaeites, whose fossil legs be found in the same deposits.