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Lot 30 - Vasily Alexandrovich Kotarbinsky, Sermon at Capernaum, 19th C.

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Oil on canvas
Vasily Alexandrovich Kotarbinsky (1849-1921) – Polish-Russian painter
Signiert 'Kotarbinsky' lower righ
Dimensions: 78.5 x 120.3 cm
Gilt stucco frame: 105 x 150.5 cm
Vivid scenic depiction of the Capernaum-story in front of a magnificent Far Eastern backdrop
This beautiful and epic interpretation of the Sermon at Capernaum belongs to the highlights of the auction and is a typical work of the artist concerning scale, subject and way of painting of the Russian-Polish painter Vasily Alexandrovich Kotarbinsky who favored the depiction of biblical motives. The alternation of dark and bright parts brings vitality to the painting and can be seen in the color of the clothes of the figures as well as on houses and plants, were light and shadow change.


The painting is in good condition consistent with the age. The varnish is slightly darkened and tiny craquelé can be seen overall on the canvas. There are areas with scuffing due to the frame along the upper edges and corners of the canvas and scattered marks can be seen. The painting has been skillfully repaired. Several retouched spots can be seen mainly affecting the part of the figures as well as the sky and the house. On the reverse the canvas shows relined spots. The frame shows traces of usage such as tears, scratches, marks and spots with loss of color, resp. loss of material.

Vasily Alexandrovich Kotarbinsky (1849-1921)

Vasily Alexandrovich Kotarbinsky was a Polish painter of the 19th and early 20th century. Kotarbinsky started his artistical career at the Warsaw School of Drawing in the 1870s, later he studied at the art academy in St. Petersburg. Very important for his development were several longer stays in Rome, which had a deep impact on his way of painting and his choice of subjects. He borrowed money from his family for his first trip to Rome during his education and stayed there for three years. Characteristic for his oeuvre are the depictions of biblical subjects as well as classical Roman themes and fantastic-mythical images. One of his main works are the frescos in the St. Vladimir Cathedral in Kiev. Works of the artist are in collections in St. Petersburg and Moscow. (msc)

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