The old mill - Vasily Dmitrievich Polenov. 135x88 cm
The landscape genre in the work of Vasily Polenov occupies a special place, and there is great irony in this. Dreaming even in the days of training to rest on the laurels of a master of historical painting, Polenov went down in the history of art precisely as an outstanding landscape painter. He created many "subgenres" - a poetic landscape, a narrative landscape, a mood landscape, etc., leaving lyrical descriptions of any places.
"The Old Mill" - the picture is unusually realistic and deep. This is a canvas with an internal history. The central place here is occupied, in fact, by the mill. Its heavy wheels darkened with time, the wooden frame decayed, and the roof was a rough island of straw. But looking at the almost stagnant water of this pond, an empty mill, you can so vividly imagine how life was boiling here before - big wheels spun in motion, driven by a stream of water, the miller walked importantly, and carts with grain stretched to the mill.
Now this place is deserted and this abandonment, loneliness is perfectly emphasized by the background - a cloudy day and heavy fog from which rare trees barely peep. Only a boy on the river bank brings movement to the picture, despite his static pose - he fishes and seems to have quieted down, afraid to wake this quiet abandoned place from a well-deserved dream.