Museums and Art

"Bread", Tatyana Nilovna Yablonskaya - description of the painting

Bread - Tatyana Nilovna Yablonskaya. 370 x 201 cm

This is one of the widely known paintings of the Soviet and Ukrainian artist Tatyana Yablonskaya. The canvas brought the artist the Stalin Prize and caused a storm of various emotions. At the end of her life, Yablonskaya herself called the canvas a “poster” because of its social orientation, but she was a tough and self-critical person, so these words can be considered a purely subjective assessment of the master who is constantly dissatisfied with himself.

Before exhibiting this picture, the artist received sharp criticism of her previous works, which were censured for using the ideas of impressionism. Any references to the "bourgeois culture" in the USSR were suppressed and condemned. Tatyana Nilovna herself considered the accusation true and decided to write a more realistic canvas with a sharp social orientation. He became "Bread", but the nature of the artist was such that she physically could not follow the party dogma, continuing to "see as an artist", and not fulfill the state order.

The picture shows the moment when the village women collect threshed and sifted grain in bags on the threshing floor. In the background is a huge stack, blocking the horizon and creating a feeling of chamberness on the canvas. It serves as a backdrop to everything that happens on different planes.

Strong, tanned and rosy women are cleanly and elegantly dressed. The artist later admitted that she specially “dressed up” her characters in more festive clothes in order to betray the canvas of joy and picturesqueness. Later, she was often criticized for her “nationalist” inclinations due to the fact that Ukrainian folk motifs are clearly visible in the outfits of the peasant women, although at first glance this cannot be said.

The whole canvas is designed in golden warm colors. This is supported not only by the color of the grain, but also by the stream of golden sunlight that literally fills the entire canvas.

The composition here is very dynamic. The figures and elements in the background form a semicircle, highlighting the three main figures in the foreground. This is a woman tying a bag of grain, a smiling peasant woman in front of whom stands a special shovel for grain and a woman who has turned away from the audience and sprinkles grain in a bag.

The general mood of the picture is a joyful work that brings pleasure and gives people happiness.