Portrait of the Military Engineer Andrey Delvig (1882) by Ilya Repin

Portrait of the Military Engineer Andrey Delvig - Ilya Repin - 1882

Artwork Information

TitlePortrait of the Military Engineer Andrey Delvig
ArtistIlya Repin
Art MovementRealism
Current LocationTretyakov Gallery, Moscow, Russia

About Portrait of the Military Engineer Andrey Delvig

The artwork titled “Portrait of the Military Engineer Andrey Delvig” is a creation of the renowned artist Ilya Repin, completed in the year 1882. The medium of this portrait is oil on canvas, which was a prominent choice for such works during that time. As a representation of the Realism art movement, this artwork captures the likeness and essence of its subject with a stark attention to detail and an emphasis on the subject’s real-world visage and character. The genre of the artwork is portraiture, a genre that Repin was particularly celebrated for. This particular piece is held at the Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow, Russia, where it continues to be displayed.

The portrait features Andrey Delvig, a military engineer whose presence is captured with a sense of gravitas and formality. Delvig is depicted seated in an ornate, high-backed armchair that symbolizes his position and status. He is adorned in a formal military uniform, rich with decorations and insignia that denote his rank and achievements. The uniform is predominantly black with red accents and is heavily embellished with what appear to be medals and a star-shaped order on his left chest, as well as intricate embroidery and epaulettes that showcase his distinguished service.

Delvig’s visage is rendered with a focus on realism; his countenance bears the marks of aging and experience, characterized by deep lines and a serious, perhaps contemplative, expression. The artist has paid significant attention to the textures, from the smooth sheen of the medals to the soft, weathered quality of Delvig’s skin. His hands, holding what appears to be a pair of white gloves and a small object, possibly a snuffbox or a case, are shown with comparable detail, suggesting the subject’s refined status.

The background of the artwork is subdued, allowing the viewer’s focus to remain on Delvig himself. It appears to be a blend of dark and neutral tones, which serve to accentuate the subject and his attire without distraction.

In summary, the striking realism and the careful detailing of the uniform and decorations reflect Repin’s mastery in portraying societal elites and their roles with depth and precision, capturing both the outer appearance and hinting at the inner life of the individual depicted in “Portrait of the Military Engineer Andrey Delvig.”

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