- Ivan Argunov
Ivan Petrovich Argunov ( _ru. Иван Петрович Аргунов; 1727–1802) was a Russian painter, one of the founders of the
Russian school of portrait painting.
He was a
serfbelonging to Count Sheremetevand had grown in the family of his uncle, Semyon Mikhaylovich Argunov who was a steward of princess Cherkasskyand later a major-domofor count Sheremetev. For many years Semyon managed Sheremetev's house on Millionnaya streetin Saint-Petersburgand that was the house where Ivan grew up.
In 1746–1749 Ivan Argunov studied painting with a German artist named
Georg Groothwho at the time was in employ of the Emperess Elizabeth of Russia. Ivan also got lessons from his cousins Fedor Leontyevich Argunovand Fedor Semenovich Argunov, painters working in Saint-Petersburg on decorating the Imperial residences. Argunov's first works were icons for the Palace Church in "Great Tsarskoe SeloPalace" (1753) and for the New Jerusalem Monastery(1749). At that time he also created his only known historical painting "Dying Cleopatra". His earliest known portraits were of "Prince Ivan Ivanovich Lobanov-Rostovsky" (1752) and influence.
In 1760s Argunov was in his prime. He created many beautiful parade and psychological portraits and icons. Among his subjects were Russian royalty and of course Argunov's masters Sheremetevs as well as their relatives
Lazarevs and counts Tolstoy. He was one of the creators of the genre of posthumous portraits, painting many dead Sheremetevs.
In 1770 Argunov became the majordomo for the Sheremtev's house on Millionnaya street, then the majordomo of the Moscow house of Sheremetevs, then one of the stewards for their estates (chlen krepostnoj kollegii grafov Sheremetevs). He painted much less but it was in that time (1784) he created his masterpiece ". Between the second half of 1780s until his death in 1802 Argunov did not paint but spent all his time managing different estates and businesses of Sheremetevs.
Argunov was an important teacher of art. He taught painting classes beginning in 1753 — before the opening of the
Imperial Academy of Artsin 1757. Among his students were Anton Losenko, Fyodor Rokotov, Golovachevskyand Sablukov— all four future teachers of the Academy. Argunov's sons were also his pupils. Two of them: ( Nikolay Argunovand Yakov Argunov) became painters, while the third ( Pavel Argunov) became an architect.
References and links
* [http://russianpaintings.net/doc.vphp?id=449 Biography and works] on the Russian Paintings Gallery
*"Russian Portrait [sic] of the 18th and 19th century" (exhibition catalog).
* [http://www.nasledie-rus.ru/podshivka/7711.php Natalia Presnova "All Argunovs"] ru icon
* [http://nearyou.ru/argunov/0ar.html Biography and works] ru icon
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