We are definitely on the downhill slope now and yet back with the annunciating. I could not resist this one...
|The Annunciation (1909) Oleksandr Murashko|
I was looking for something else and there this was and I instantly fell in love. Sadly, before now I did not know anything about Oleksandr Murashko (1875-1919) but the gorgeousness of this image, which I thought was far more modern, drove me to find out more. I love this annunciation possibly the most of any of the ones I've covered this month because, at first, I didn't realise it was one. There is a girl kneeling in front of her tapestry, surprised by another girl (with a righteous bob cut) who has come in with a lily. Both are dressed in white shifts but the over-riding hue is blue, from the diaphanous curtains that billow as the angel enters, to the sapphire walls. The angel is androgynous - is it a flapper or a medieval page? - and has an expression of silent concentration. Mary has some lovely plaits and I love the tumbling box of tapestry wool and the little pink flowers.
Murashko was born in Kiev in the Ukraine in 1875. He studied art in St Petersburg before traveling in Europe and his career was successful not only in his homeland but beyond. He reminds me quite a bit of Mucha in that he expresses his patriotism through the beauty of his land and its history. He taught at Kiev Art School and co-founded a State Academy of Art. However, Kiev was filled with unrest and war during the first decades of the twentieth century and Murashko was a victim of it, being taken out and shot by a gang in 1919.
His work marries many aspects of European art as he must have experienced it on his travels. There are works that are impressionist, and more realist works such as Winter (1905). The reason I love his annunciation is that there is movement rather than a static scene. The angel is advancing, Mary is turning, the curtains billow. This is an annunciation in progress and we are watching it unfold.
See you tomorrow...