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Firsov, Ivan Ivanovich

His father and grandfather were artists. Fifteen years, the imperial decree, he went along with carpenters, carvers and gilders, to St. Petersburg to participate in decorating the town for the wedding of the heir to the throne - the future Peter III, a German princess - a future Catherine II. Firsov performed "zolotarnye work," but quickly drew the attention of artists.
In 1747, he was already in the "picturesque team" Office of the buildings and works under the direction of I. Vishnjakova J. and J. Valeriani.
Firsov in 1759 became court painter to the successor of Peter Fedorovich, goes to Oranienbaum, writes the scenery for opera productions and draws some palatial interiors.
Firsov In 1762, enrolled with the Office of the Directorate of the Imperial Theatres, with whom he will be linked to the end of its activities.
His talent was noted, and on the personal instructions of Catherine II, when he was already one of the famous Russian artists, he was sent "in foreign parts for two years for the best scenic and theatrical science learning."

In 1765, the artist was in Paris, struck him in an atmosphere of freedom, independence, respect. There wrote his only significant work - it's famous painting "The Young Painter" (1760), one of the first in the Russian domestic genre.
Judging by their faces, costumes, setting - shown by the French. Boy in front of a large easel painter paints a portrait of a little girl who was tired from a long posing. Standing next to her a young woman, probably trying to persuade her to sit a little longer. Firsov great transmits natural postures and movements.
Workshop fills even the sunlight. On the walls - paintings on the table - women's marble bust, a few books and a mannequin made ​​of papier-mache, depicting a human figure.
in Russian painting of the time it is difficult to find an equally naturally, freely transferred space. Coloring picture of pink and gray, silver. Of course, Firsov was familiar with painting ZH.-B.-S. Chardin, but just was not an imitator. He borrowed the main artistic principle - to see and capture the poetry of everyday life, stop living in the moment of its greatest spirituality.

Firsov spent in Paris only a little over two years. He often suffered "extreme need", as money from Russia to France, there were long delays.
hard fate of the artist on his return to Russia. The work of theatrical decorator - for meager pay, no weekends and holidays, under the supervision of third-rate foreign artists - utterly exhausted his health. In 1784, he fell ill with severe mental illness, and no information about his fate did not survive.

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