Dedicated to the 300th anniversary of the city of Saint Petersburg and the 300th anniversary of the Military History Museum of Artillery, Engineer Troops, and Signals Troops.





The art collection of the Military History Museum of Artillery, Engineer Troops, and Signals Troops


Published by Belyi Gorod, Moscow, 2003.




About the Museum

Creation of the Military History Museum’s art collections

Russian battle paintings of the first half of the 19th century

Russian battle paintings of the second half of the 19th century

Battle painters of the late 19th and early 20th centuries

Historical portraits in the Museum’s exhibits and collections

Soviet depictive art

List of illustrations





By Valerii Krylov, Chief of the Military History Museum of Artillery, Engineer Troops, and Signals Troops.


In the historical center of St. Petersburg, in the crownwork of the Peter and Paul Fortress, is located the Military History Museum of Artillery, Engineer Troops, and Signals Troops. This, the oldest military museum in Russia, has its origins in the armory of the Peter and Paul Fortress, founded by Peter I in 1703. Established to preserve and “memorialize for eternal glory” unique historical examples of weaponry, it has achieved the status of one of the world’s great military museums. In 1756 Graf P.I. Shuvalov used the armory’s collection as the basis for the Memorial Hall located on Liteinaya Prospect in St. Petersburg. At that time the collection already numbered some 6000 items. In 1797, after Emperor Paul I visited the Memorial Hall, it was confirmed as “the official central repository of ancient militaria” (meaning the central military museum of Russia).


In the first half of the 19th century the collection was significantly increased with examples of Russian arms and trophies from the Patriotic War of 1812. In 1869 the Memorial Hall, renamed the Artillery Museum in 1868 (and in 1903—the Historical Artillery Museum), was transferred to the arsenal building in the crownwork of the Peter and Paul Fortress, where it still is today. Preserved without any reconstruction, the building now is a monument to mid-19th century military architecture. A three-story fortification of brick and Putilov plinth, from above it is a horseshoe-shaped construction with embrasures and loopholes, with walls 1.3 to 1.8 meters thick. The arms of the Russian empire were placed on the arch above the gates of the eastern wing. The years of the fortification’s construction (1850-1860) are on cast iron plaques, and above the dates— bronze monograms of emperors Nicholas I and Alexander II.


Th talented historian Lieutenant General N. Ye. Brandenburg, who managed the museum from 1872 to 1903, performed great services in developing and popularizing the museum’s collections, and in Russia was the first to treat military museums as a formal discipline.


On 13 May 1912 the first “Regulation for the Historical Artillery Museum” was confirmed. The institution received its own seal and stamp.


During the Civil War and World War Two the museum had to evacuate parts of its collection to Yaroslavl and Novosibirsk. Unfortunately, during this time some loss could not be avoided. Still, thanks to the selfless efforts of the museum workers, the institution not only survived, but during World War Two managed to significantly augment its holdings.


In the post-war period the museum continued to develop and grow through the acquisition of contemporary military technology and art works. Academic research work and publishing efforts were inaugurated.


In 1963 the Historical Artillery Museum absorbed the Central Historical Military Engineers Museum, and two years later—the Military Signals Museum with over a hundred thousand items. With this the institution received its present title—the Military History Museum of Artillery, Engineer Troops, and Signals Troops [Voenno-istoricheskii muzei artillerii, inzhenernykh voisk i voisk svyazi (VIMAIViVS)].


In 1991 the museum received artifacts from the Memorial Museum House of Mikhail Illarionovich Golenishchev-Kutuzov in the city of Boleslawec (Poland).


Today the museum possesses a priceless collection of artillery pieces, firearms, edged weapons, engineering technology, communications devices, military flags, military uniforms, battle paintings and drawings, awards, and badges. In its holdings are more than 850 thousand items, 215 thousand archival documents, and 107 thousand volumes of military history books. From 1918 the museum preserved the collections of 27 Russian army regimental museums (the Life-Guards Preobrazhenskii, Semenovskii, and Pavlovskii regiments, the Horse Guards, the Life-Guards Sapper Battalion, and others).


Among the rarities in the museum are a kettledrum carriage for carrying artillery flags, small cannons for the poteshnyi play regiments of Peter I, military medals and decorations of Russian emperors and leading military commanders, gifts presented to Russian army regiments made of silver and crystal, including from the Faberge firm, the personal weapons of Alexander I, Nicholas II, Ataman Platov, and Soviet generals and commanders.


The museum also takes pride in its collections of small statuary, watercolors, illustrations, drawings, battle paintings, and portraits of historical persons and prominent military leaders. In our museum a foremost position is held by paintings and canvases that depict our Motherland’s heroic martial past. These include portraits of glorious commanders and distinguished soldiers and officers, paintings by famous Russian battle artists such as B. P. Willewalde, N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii, A. I. Charlemagne, P. O. Kovalevskii, F. A. Roubaud, A. N. Popov, N. S. Samokish, and M. B. Grekov. These works form the basis of the museum’s art collection. Currently the VIMAIViVS possesses one of the largest collections of battle paintings in the world, the best examples of which are presented in this album.


(Signed) Krylov





The beginning of the art collections of the Military History Museum of Artillery, Engineer Troops, and Signals Troops (VIMAIViVS) was prompted by a 1918 decree prohibiting taking valuable artistic and historic items out of the country and a decree mandating the registration and preservation of artistic and historic monuments. On 27 January 1918 an order from the People’s Commissar for Military and Naval Affairs established a special organization to preserve and transfer military museums to government repositories. The result of a year’s activity by the organization was the concentration in the Historical Artillery Musuem [Artilleriiskii istoricheskii muzei (AIM)] of the holdings of many guards regiments, military schools, and army units. However, in 1930 these items moved to the care of the Museum of Military Historical Life [Voennyi istoriko-bytovoi muzei (VIBM)]. In 1937 the holdings of this institution again and for a final time merged with those of the Historical Artillery Museum.


Many of the items that arrived in 1917 were pictures (sketches, watercolors, and other media) of Russian army uniforms and illustrations from the histories of Russian army regiments, not only from regimental museums but also from the collection of General-Master of Ordnance Grand Duke Michael Nikolaevich.


This period saw the creation of a series of works by the Trophy Commission [Trofeinaya komissiya] relating events of the First World War from 1914 to 1918. This Trophy Commission was originally formed as a military art detachment:


In May 1915 a special military art detachment, formed with Highest approval, was sent to the fronts, including the Caucasus. The head of the detachment was guards Colonel V. K. Shenk of the Military Field Chancellery. Its members were Professor of battle painting N. S. Samokish and instructors at the Academy’s school of fine arts Petr Kotov, Petr Miturovich, Petr Pokarzhevskii, Karp Trofimenko, and Rudolf Frents… (M. Lemke, 250 dnei v tsarskoi stavke. Peterburg, 1920. Page 139.)


Soon this detachment grew in size and in June of 1916 was placed under the Trophy Commission, which along with artists included writers, historians, and photographers. All these persons were on military duty and engaged in collecting artifacts and documents and in creating artistic works that to one way or another reflected the events of the First World War. In the Military History Museum of Artillery, Engineer Troops, and Signals Troops is preserved a document fixing the permanent composition of the Trophy Commission (over 80 persons).


In June 1915 a second trip of the Trophy Commission’s military art detachment was organized to visit the supreme commander-in-chief’s headquarters and the Southwest Front. This group included artists Mikhail Mizernyuk, Ivan Dryapochenko, and Nikolai Sergeev, writers Lev Ginerman, and Georgii Sinel’nikov, and photographer Albert Eglit.


The detachment worked at the headquarters of VII Army in the town of Buchach. In the VII Siberian Corps’ 13th Division the artists sketched studies under artillery fire. In this corps’ 12th Division in Ponory, four miles from the front trench line, over thirty sketches were made of holders of St. George medals for bravery. The journey then took the detachment through the 22nd Corps, the 2nd Cavalry Corps in Tismenitsa, the 9th Cavalry Division in Khanusovtsy, and the 9th Trans-Amur and 74th divisions in the town of Stanislav.


“The lower ranks under my command,” wrote Staff-Captain Kolobov, a member of the Trophy Commission, “displayed zeal for their duties in spite of the hardships. They worked for days at a time from 7 in the morning to 10 at night, and often under battle conditions under actual artillery fire. Several times the detachment had to shelter in ruined peasant huts…  and sleep in dilapidated barns which up to then had been field hospitals or morgues.”


In spite of the difficult frontline conditions, the artists made many sketches of St.-George holders and completed a whole series of oil and watercolor paintings in forward positions.


In 1929 part of the collection of the Society for History Enthusiasts [Obshchestvo revnitelei istorii] was also transferred to the museum’s holdings. In the 1930s and ‘40s the filling of the art collections was continued through the acquisition of art works in government storehouses and from private persons.


In 1931 more than forty battle canvases were transferred from the collections of the Winter Palace and State Hermitage. They cover the history of fortress sieges by Russian soldiers, and also included paintings of Russian fortifications.


A large addition to the museum’s art collections was made in 1955 by the M. B. Grekov Studio, the notable creative collective of military artists, which transferred to the museum’s holdings a whole series of works made on the frontlines of the Second World War. The artists had made many trips to the front, amassing a rich trove of artistic and documentary material. The studio members were participants in all the important military operations carried out by Soviet forces: the battles of Moscow, Stalingrad, the Crimea, and the Kursk salient, and in Poland, Romania, and Czechoslovakia. Many of the members met at the walls of the Reichstag in 1945.


The first journey of studio members to the Western Front was in February 1942 in the operational area of Lieutenant General K. K. Rokossovskii’s 16th Army. This group included Red Army members P. Krivonogov, A. Gorpenko, Ye. Komarov, N. Belyaev, G. Prokopinskii, V. Rybin, and others.


At the end of 1942 a group of artists composed of V. Medvedev, Ye. Komarov, G. Prokopinskii, F. Sachko, P. Kirpichev, V. Savenkov, and I. Lukomskii left for the heroic fighting city of Stalingrad, to the area of operations of General V. I. Chuikov’s legendary 62nd Army. Under the most difficult conditions of a terrible battle the artists created many studies, sketches, and paintings which depicted soldiers and officers, snipers and nurses, artillery and military engineers, workers, and military mechanics, all under bombs and shells.


In 1942 and 1943 talented additions came to the studio in the persons of painters K. Kitaika, M. Domashchenko, N. Denisov, V. Pravdin, and others. K. Kitaika took part in horse-mounted raids in the enemy rear. N. Obryn’ba worked and fought alongside partisans in the forests of Belorussia. A. Gorpenko, L. Golovanov, A. Stadnik, and others participated in the forcing of the Dnieper River and liberation of the Ukraine. Artists who worked and advanced with frontline units included V. Bogatkin, Ye. Komarov, P. Pinkisevich, L. Golovanov, V. Klimashin, V. Medvedev, A. Kokorin, and N. Sokolov.


In August 1945 artists V. Vysotskii, P. Kirpichev, F. Usypenko, and D. Pyatkin flew out to Manchuria where Soviet forces destroyed the Kwantung army.


Items from the collection of the Central Historical Military Engineers Museum [Tsentral’nyi istoricheskii voenno-inzhenernyi muzei – TsIVIMe] became valuable acquisitions for the AIM. The TsIVMe possessed one of the best collections of Russian military battle paintings in the country. The most interesting part of this collection was the works of battle artists of the 19th and early 20th centuries, the characteristic feature of which was great historical accuracy in the depiction of events, thus allowing the battle paintings to be used as valuable documentation of historical military art and science. Most of all this is seen in the depiction of that moment of a battle or campaign in which the principle historical concept of a given event is revealed through expressive “live” actors. Through the particular is revealed the general.


Among the holdings of the VIMAIViVS a large place is occupied by artistic works reflecting the heroic martial past of our Motherland. These are mainly portraits of glorious commanders, distinguished soldiers and officers, and prominent military leaders; paintings by famous Russian battle artists, drawings, albums, and lithographs. These works laid the basis for the art collections of the AIM (VIMAIViVS). In recent years (1950-1960) the art collection was expanded by individual works produced, as a rule, at the museum’s order.





Battle art is undoubtedly a particular and specialized branch of historical art dedicated to the depiction of historical military events of the recent or distant past, and above all to the portrayal of the battle as the decisive event of this or that actual historical war.


However, it is too restrictive as well as inaccurate to link the theme of battle in art only to the depiction of battles. The battle theme reaches further, and one encounters as motifs military campaigns, military negotiations, preparations for battle, and so on. In Russian secular painting of the 18th and especially the 19th centuries there is an increased intertwining of the battle genre with other subjects while still maintaining the particulars of battle art as a depiction of war in all its complexity.


Battle paintings were always more closely connected to contemporary events than other themes in historical art. Their appearance, consolidation, and development was stimulated by contemporary military events. These events, still fresh in memory and of direct emotional impact, found their graphical reflection in battle paintings. Until the 19th century, battle art in Russia had not significantly developed due to secular depictive art being new, immature, and subservient to western styles. In the first half of the 19th century Russian battle art experienced a period of consolidation and establishment as its own form of painting and a distinct genre. Recent events in Russia’s military history found their reflection in the works of leading battle painters. Such, for example, were the pictures by A. Ye. Kotsebu on the wars of Peter the Great (the Northern War) and the Seven Years War (1756-1763): “The Battle of Narva 19 November 1700,” “Storming of the Fortress of Noteburg 11 October 1702,” and “The Taking of the Colberg Fortress on 6 December 1762.”


The battle artist Aleksandr Yevstaf’evich Kotsebu (1815-1889) was a pupil in the 2nd Cadet Corps in St. Petersburg and after graduation served as an officer in the Russian guards, in the Lithuania Infantry Regiment. His training in the cadet corps and service in his regiment gave him a familiarity with army life and military affairs that later was of great use to him as a battle artist. He was nevertheless not enthused over a military career. Drawn to the arts, he began to visit classes in battle painting at the Academy of Arts. His education was so successful that he received the privilege of studying abroad. In 1847 Kotsebu set off for Europe, making trips to various battlefields of the Seven Years War between Russia and Prussia to make studies for a series of paintings that had been commissioned on this conflict. During the revolutions of 1848, when on the orders of Nicholas I all Russian artists studying abroad had to leave Paris, Kotsebu settled in Munich where he worked on his cycle of paintings on the Seven Years War.


After returning to St. Petersburg in 1850, Kotsebu received the title of academician and obtained permission to again go abroad to finish his series of paintings on the Seven Years War. After completing this work Kotsebu received a new assignment, and in 1852 and 1853 he visited Italy and Switzerland in order to make studies of the locations where the events of A. V. Suvorov’s Italian and Swiss campaigns took place in 1799.


Upon returning to Munich, he built a large studio where he worked until the end of his life completing several series of historical military paintings on Suvorov’s campaigns in Italy and Switzerland and the Northern War of Peter the Great with Sweden. He traveled to Russia only to present his finished work. Almost all of Kotsebu’s pictures are in the Winter Palace.


In our museum are the three above-mentioned pictures by this master. The artist dedicated his creativity to depicting a number of important events in Russian military history from the 13th to 19th centuries. More than any other Russian academic battle painter, he may be called the artist-historiographer of Russian martial glory. A special characteristic of this painter’s work is the creation of integral thematic cycles of large battle pictures of the “panorama” type. His canvases usually depict a vast space on which is played out a many-layered graphical story of this or that battle or campaign. Kotsebu’s best pictures are full of life, movement, and—sometimes—true drama, in a realistic setting, authentic and expressive. Of course the effect of these works is strong, which in combination with their decorative quality makes it apparent that these were intended for grand parade halls in palaces and galleries.


A. Ye. Kotsebu habitually began work on a painting by studying the scene of the action and then choosing a point of view most favorable for depicting the event to be represented. The scenery and action in his paintings merge into a single form. He shows the episode itself with documentary accuracy, having conscientiously researched all available historical materials and then keeping true to them in all details. However, it is his creative quality and not just the documentary character of his best canvases, as well as his great gift for composition and his mastery of drawing and color, that make them convincing and impressive. In his time Kotsebu was known only to a comparatively narrow circle of admirers of academic art. Wider Russian democratic society was unaware of his canvases.


A. Ye. Kotsebu’s best works were first shown to a mass audience at an exhibition of Russian historical art in the Tretyakov Gallery in 1939, and then in postwar exhibitions in the Hermitage.


His first paintings, done in St. Petersburg after finishing his studies at the Academy of Arts and before first going abroad, are to a great extent according to tradition. Such is the painting “The Storming of Noteburg” (1848). The subject is one of the most important events from the beginning of the Northern War (1700-1721)—Peter I’s first important victory over the Swedes after the Russian army’s defeat at Narva in 1700. The strong Swedish fortress of Noteburg, located on a small island where the Neva River leaves Lake Ladoga, was taken by storm by Russian troops on 12 October 1702 after a siege of almost two weeks. Noteburg was formerly the small old Russian town of Oreshek, founded as long ago as the 14th century and captured by the Swedes in 1611. Its seizure was a triumph for the young Russian army under the personal leadership of Peter I. “True, this town was a tough nut,” wrote Peter, “but, praise God, it was successfully chewed…” Since the taking of Noteburg opened the way along the Neva to the Baltic Sea, Peter renamed it Schlüsselburg (“Key-City”).


In his painting Kotsebu shows the moment of the storming of the fortress by Russian troops. In the foreground—the Russian camp on the Neva riverbank. In the background—Russian soldiers crossing in boats to the island and the assault on the fortress through a breach in its walls made by artillery. Thick clouds of white smoke envelop the fortress. A young Peter I in the uniform of the Preobrazhenskii Guards stands in an open area within the Russian camp and directs the assault. To his left, under cover, are his general officers A. D. Menshikov, Field Marshal B. P. Sheremetev (commander-in-chief of the Russian army), F. A. Golovin (one of the creators of the Russian navy), and Field Marshal A. N. Repnin (participant in the Azov campaign and the Northern War). Repnin holds a letter in his hand; to the side stands a foreigner in a cloak, hat in hand. His features resemble those of Field Marshal Ogilvy who entered Russian service on the recommendation contained in a letter from the emperor of Austria. In this the young artist apparently violates truth, since Ogilvy arrived in Russia later, in 1704 at Narva. Earthworks and wounded men being transported are also depicted in the foreground. The assault in the background is set in a wide landscape. Great attention is given to representing atmospheric conditions such as the white clumps of smoke that enshroud the fortress as it is being stormed.


Another painting from the series on the Northern War is A. Ye. Kotsebu’s work “The Battle of Narva, 19 November 1700.” This informs us of how the Russian forces besieging the fortress of Narva were attacked by the Swedish army and forced to retreat. The painting shows the battle on the Russian force’s right flank. In hand-to-hand fighting the Preobrazhenskii Guards Regiment repulses the Swedish attack and covers the withdrawal across a bridge over the Narov River of units from Golovin’s division. In the center of the painting guardsmen defend their regiment’s flag, while on the right on a chestnut horse is the Swedish king, Charles XII.


Our collection’s painting “The Taking of Colberg on 6 December 1761” is part of a cycle of pictures on the Seven Years War. The painting depicts the time when after lengthy military operations a Russian corps under the command of the distinguished leader P. A. Rumyantsev besieged the fortress and forced its garrison to surrender. In the foreground Russian infantry (in green) and artillery (in red) have ceased firing and now observe as the Prussian garrison comes out of the fortress gates (in the background). General Rumyantsev (on a white horse) accepts the capitulation from representatives of the Prussian garrison. Behind them stands a group of Russian cossacks with lances. Below, Russian officers use an overturned gabion to prepare documents announcing the victory to Empress Elizabeth. Next to them a hussar stands waiting.


The taking of the fortress of Colberg was the last significant operation successfully undertaken by the Russian army during the Seven Years War. Soon after this, at the end of December 1761, the Prussian king, Frederick II, was forced to start peace negotiations.


In the first half of the 19th century Russian battle painting experienced a time of establishment and consolidation as a separate genre. This establishment and consolidation of the battle genre was occasioned by the great military events of the first quarter of the 19th century—the victorious struggle of Russia against Napoleon’s invasion.


The Patriotic War of 1812 profoundly stirred the minds and hearts of the Russian people and had a significant influence on the further development of all Russian culture, including representational arts (the strengthening of unique national characteristics, connection with the people, and tendencies toward realism). This was reflected to only an insignificant degree in Russian academic battle paintings of the first half of the 19th century, but already in the 1840s and ‘50s this art was starting to stand firmly on its own feet and its practitioners possessed fine professional skill. One of the reasons for this delay was that Russian ruling circles did not believe in the potential of Russian art and showed favoritism toward foreigners.


Thus, for example, Emperor Nicholas I ordered a series of paintings for the Winter Palace on the Patriotic War of 1812 from the German artist P. Hess. On the tsar’s invitation, Hess traveled to Russia in 1839 to survey the battlefields of the 1812 campaign, and in the following years he produced twelve paintings depicting this campaign’s important battles. These large multi-figure compositions, executed with professional mastery, were documentarily accurate and impressive, but were cold and devoid of patriotic spirit. P. Hess’s best painting was “The French Crossing the Berezina.” Another painting by this artist, painted in 1854 and now in our museum, is “The Battle of Losmin, 6 November 1812.”


It is notable that not one of Hess’s paintings except “The Battle of Borodino” shows M. I. Kutuzov, and even in this single painting his figure is barely visible in the background. A copy of P. Hess’s “The Battle of Borodino,” made by the artist A. P. Schwabe in the second half of the 19th century, hangs in the hall of our museum.


Of course, the twelve canvases of P. Hess could not exhaust the wealth of subject matter from the 1812 war, and a wide and fruitful field of creativity remained for Russian battle artists. Thus, the large scale painting “The Battle of Borodino” (1913) by the artists F. Roubaud and K. Bekker shows a battle in which both sides employed large masses of cavalry in addition to infantry and artillery,. Napoleon repeatedly tried to pierce the Russian center with massed cavalry attacks. Kutuzov countered these attacks not only with the steadfastness of the Russian infantry, but with furious counterattacks by Russian cavalry. The painting depicts the collision of large masses of men and horses, which is the dynamic of a cavalry battle. The sacrifices of a battle are expressively yet with restraint shown in the painting’s foreground. Colorful military uniforms produce a gamut of bright hues.


The best works of academic battle artists of the first half of the 19th century deserve continual and untiring attention. They were made with undoubted professional mastery out of a serious creative desire to show truly significant heroic feats of the Russian army and its leaders. In these paintings objective truth pierces through the officially approved parade-ground rendering, and they were accepted as a template for the chronicle of our Motherland’s military past. Still, hints of realism gradually appeared in the treatment of the theme of battle by Russian artists of the first half of the 19th century, first in the representation of landscape and then in the figure of man in war, as well as in scenes of life in barracks and camp. More attention was paid not only to monarchs, commanders, and prominent historical figures, but also to private soldiers and line officers, to their heroism in overcoming the challenges of campaign and battlefield circumstances. Such are the paintings “The Life-Guards Horse Regiment in a German Town in 1813,” “Retreat of Napoleon’s Army, Pursued by Russian Forces in 1812” (artist unknown), “Russian Cavalry Attack on a French Battery during the Battle of Borodino” (V. V. Mazurovskii), and “General Korennyi’s Feat at Leipzig in 1813” (copy by an unknown artist of a painting by P. I. Babaev).


The victorious conclusion of the wars with Napoleonic France, having awakened interest in Russia’s military past, helped the development of Russian battle art of the first half of the 19th century. During this period there were a multitude of official commissions for Russian and foreign artists to produce large historical battle paintings, primarily intended for the Winter Palace. Russian academic battle painters faced the task of depicting the battles and campaigns of the Russian army in the fighting outside the country’s borders in 1813-1814. This task was successfully met by such well-known battle artists as A. I. Sauerweid (“The Battle of Leipzig from 2 to 7 October 1813”), B. P. Willewalde (“The Battle of Paris, 17 March 1814”), V. F. Timm “The Battle of Fere-Champenoise, 13 March 1814”), and Shevin (“The Siege of Reims by the 8th Infantry Corps Under the Command of General-Adjutant Saint-Priest, 1814”).


The first in this series of paintings is the work of an “old school” battle artist—A. I. Sauerweid (1783-1844)—entitled “The Battle of Leipzig from 2 to 7 October 1813.” The picture shows the decisive moment of the “Battle of Nations”: Russian and German troops in the background move to attack the enemy’s key position (the village of Probstheida). On a prominence on the right called the Hill of the Monarchs are Austrian Field Marshal Schwarzenberg (commander of the allied forces), King Frederick William of Prussia, Emperor Francis I of Austria, and Emperor Alexander I of Russia. Napoleon threw his whole reserve into the battle to keep hold of Probstheida. The allies were able to attack the enemy troops from three sides and only lack of coordination in the allies’ movements saved Napoleon from destruction.


Another of the artist’s canvases is the painting “The Capitulation of Paris in 1814” (also called “The Last Shot Before Paris”). On the wishes of the artist, who had fallen ill, it was given to A. I. Sauerweid’s student B. P. Willewalde “for finishing touches” and is credited as his work. The canvas depicts the moment of General Lapuant’s arrival at the St. Chaumont hill of the Belleville heights occupied by Russian troops under Barclay de Tolly, where Russian artillery was deployed to bombard Paris. Montmartre (the hill with the mill on the painting’s left) was also occupied by the Russians, among whom was Emperor Alexander I. Lapuant rode up to Emperor Alexander I (on the white horse) and the Prussian King Frederick William III (on the chestnut horse). Alexander I is issuing the order to cease fire, and on 19 March 1814 the allied troops entered Paris.


It is supposed that A. I. Sauerweid’s battle paintings are not numerous because the artist strove to create large canvases all on his own in all their details, not resorting to the help of students. This demanded extended periods of work for each picture and did not allow the artist to finish a series of large paintings commissioned at the end of the 1830s for the Winter Palace. The series was to depict the most important battles of the Napoleonic Wars in the years 1813 and 1814.


We must recognize Sauerweid as the founder of that school of Russian academic battle painting of the first half of the 19th century which overcame the schematic and decorative batailles of the preceding century and introduced an element of historical realism and documentary accuracy. In almost fifteen years of teaching (he was the director of the “battle” class at the Academy of Arts) he produced a whole school of Russian battle painters that included such outstanding artists as A. Ye. Kotsebu, B. P. Willewalde, and V. F. Timm. As a talented instructor concerned about improving the professional level of students at the Academy of Arts, in 1842 A. I. Sauerweid completed The Anatomy of the Horse in Lithographic Plates as a teaching aid. It is with this that there first took root the traditional mastery in depicting horses that was so characteristic of Russian battle artists.


As an artist Sauerweid was a more talented drawer than painter. The positive aspects of his battle pictures are above all the fine sketchwork, careful finishing, and documentary precision of supporting details. The painting itself is dry in style and special perspective is lacking, and his pictures’ landscapes leave much to be desired. Only his detailed production of documental precision overcomes the element of obligatory parade-ground appearance. Such, undoubtedly, is A. I. Sauerweid’s painting “The Capture of Varna” (the complete title of which is “The Engineer Attack on Varna Fortress by the Sapper Battalion on 23 September 1828”). This painting was first shown at the Academy’s exhibition of 1836. It presented a strictly documentary depiction of one of the most important moments in the Russo-Turkish War of 1827-1828—the seizure by the Life-Guards Sapper Battalion under Engineer-Colonel K. A. Schilder of the 2nd Bastion of the Turkish fortress of Varna, which led to its fall. This was preceded by a prolonged siege in which the Russian fleet took part with Nicholas I on the flagship. With the arrival of Colonel K. A. Schilder—a talented, energetic, and innovative Russian engineer who took over the direction of the siege works and developed a daring plan to seize the fortress employing engineering skill instead of the usual bloody assault—the fortress surrendered to Russia on 29 September 1828 after several underground approaches had been excavated and several of its bastions had been subsequently blown up. In this the Guards Sapper Battalion had the honor of being the first to enter Varna.


“The Capture of Varna” is a canvas of huge dimensions with many figures and a complex composition. Under careful examination this work reveals a combination of many episodes that develop the whole course of the assault with a precise depiction of the technological engineering methods employed and the difficulties that were overcome. The pictures shows all—the opening of the subterranean approach from which troops emerge, the water-filled ditch which they overcame, mobile shields used by the sappers to get closer to the enemy fortifications, the large crater from the explosion on the hill, occupied by the attackers, and, finally, tongues of flame and clouds of smoke from the burning fortress. In the distance can be seen the sea and Russian naval sailing ships. In the center towards the back is Colonel Schilder as he directs the assault. Even with all these details the picture as a whole leaves the impression of a single mass action—the assault. P. N. Glebov, who took part in the siege and later became a well-known military historian, wrote to Sauerweid regarding the painting: “So much intelligence, understanding, truth, and ability to individualize uniformity, and the main thing—that all the details of siege work are captured so faithfully that when looking into it one is irresistibly transported to the very location of Colonel Schilder’s glorious feat… Sauerweid’s painting conveys what the final act of the siege of Varna was like more than all the written descriptions.”


The artist had the task of transferring to a painting a documentary representation of a particular moment of a historical event that testified to the high level of Russian military engineering skill and the glory of the Russian troops who were able to brilliantly carry out the storming of Varna under the direction of a talented and authoritarian commander. The painting is of artistic and historiographic value since Sauerweid presented portrait likenesses not only of K. A. Schilder and several participants in the assault, but also of private soldiers insofar that he used sketches from life of survivors of the magnificent feat (several typical faces are repeated in different places in the picture). Since it was no more than 7 or 8 years from the moment Varna was captured to the time the picture was painted, it is possible that the artist had posing for him soldiers of the Life-Guards Sapper Battalion—participants in the storming and seizing of the fortress.



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In the 1840s and ‘50s Russian academic battle art found firm footing in the persons of A. I. Sauerweid, A. Ye. Kotsebu, B. P. Willewalde, and later in their students and successors who grew into a definite school characterized by a solid professional mastery in combining documental accuracy with parade-ground spectacle, all done to purposeful effect.


A. I. Sauerweid’s successor in directing the battle-painting class at the St.-Petersburg Academy of Arts was his student B. P. Willewalde, who fostered several generations of Russian battle artists. In 1848 Willewalde received the title of professor for his paintings “The Battle of Giesgubel” and “The Capture of Paris,” and from that time he headed the Academy’s battle-painting class for almost half a century (1848-1894). Willewalde had a large number of commissions and, being fond of work, painted many pictures of the battle genre. Unlike A. Ye. Kotsebu who basically produced pictures of military history and was not an eyewitness of any of the wars he depicted, Willewalde often presented contemporary events and was in many of the theaters of military operations: on the Danube and at Sevastopol in 1854-1855, in the Caucasus in 1860, and in Asiatic Turkey and again on the Danube in 1877-1878. He differed from other battle painters in that although he did paint large battle canvases, he preferred smaller forms of the battle genre, and in the 1880s and ‘90s he almost exclusively worked in this field, producing military genre scenes from the Russian army’s campaigns in Europe in 1813-1814. His creative path was quite original—having started with large battle canvases, he gradually changed to works of smaller dimensions, and finished with small-sized battle genre pictures painted in almost a miniaturist style.


B. P. Willewalde’s first large battle paintings, produced in the 1840s under the direction of A. I. Sauerweid, and also canvases begun by the teacher and finished by the student, have a more official and conventional parade-ground character. This is the principle basically followed in three massive paintings begun by A. Sauerweid and finished by B. Willewalde, including “The Battle of Leipzig” and “The Capture of Paris.” In these pictures the main actor is Alexander I, sometime depicted accompanied by Emperor Francis I of Austria and King Frederick William III of Prussia (“The Battle of Leipzig”).


In those large battle canvases painted by Willewalde alone there is less of the official and conventional parade ground and more variety in composition. Such are the paintings “The Battle of Ostrolenko, 15 May 1831,” “The Battle of Bashkadyklar, 19 November 1853,” and “The Battle of Kyuryuk-Dara, 24 July 1854” (the last two stemming from the Eastern War of 1853-1856). Most of the work for these paintings was done from the end of the 1840s to the middle of the 1850s.


One must be fair to Willewalde and agree that his masterful virtuosity in depicting horses and riders in all their movements and positions proved that he was not only a worthy successor to his teacher A. I. Sauerweid, but even surpassed him and transmitted this tradition of Russian academic battle painters to his many students. In this respect his brilliance is evident in such paintings as “The Battle of Grochow, 13 February 1831” and “Feat of the Horse Regiment at the Battle of Austerlitz in 1805.” His drawing is precise and supple, his painting beautiful. His works are full of expression and drama. Landscape and action are merged into a single form. For example, the painting “The Life-Guards Horse Regiment in the Battle of Fere-Champenoise, 13 March 1814” is a later work by a silver-haired master but shows no loss of skill by the 70-year old artist. Its subject is the capture of a French battery by Russian guards. The mounted guardsmen in bright cuirasses and helmets loom out of the gloom toward the viewer as they burst into the French battery’s position in the foreground. On the right next to a gun is a French cannoneer with a bandaged head, slumped over the gun trail’s wheel, and next to him an officer raises his hands. A fallen horse and rider are also here. On the left infantrymen retreat, Napoleonic eagles visible on their high shakoes. The picture is very effective, the paint is reminiscent of enamel, and its base is the light-blue sky with white clouds.


B. Willewalde’s paintings with an episodic character include “Feat of the Horse Regiment at the Battle of Austerlitz in 1805” (first shown at the Academy exhibition of 1885).


The parade-ground aspect of the works of academic artists of the first half of the 19th century, including B. P. Willewalde, is not that they depict visually spectacular events from contemporary or historical battles with documentary precision, but in that they give most attention to this “obverse” face of war and suppress its “reverse” side, its grim reality of suffering, and sacrifice that lie most of all on the shoulders of the lower-rank soldiers. Academic battle painters either did not show this solemn truth or presented an idealized version. They showed the “fury” and “carnage” of battle mostly by painting gorgeous cavalry attacks with rearing horses and wounded riders being thrown backward. They depicted the wounded and killed in emotive and theatrical poses. In addition, the documentary aspect of these battle canvases lay mainly in their materialistic element. In the article in the Military Encyclopedia for B. P. Willewalde we find such a trait as part of his work’s documentary aspect: “Dependence on official circles that at the time were the only support for the production of battle paintings, along with the as yet limited development of realism in art, invariably made special demands on this portrayer of war; the highest value was placed on external accuracy in the uniforms and appearance of the troops which corresponded to the official conception of war and how to relate to it.”


Closed related to the work of A. Ye. Kotsebu and B. P. Willewalde is the work of their student A. I. Charlemagne, although he was more of a painter of “historical genre” than of battles. Adolph Ivanovich Charlemagne (1826-1901) was the grandson of a French émigré sculptor and designer under Catherine II, and his father was an architect. He entered the St.-Petersburg Academy of Arts in 1848, where at first he studied in the “historical” class of Professor F. A. Bruni, but when he discovered his partiality toward themes more closely connected with the present he transferred to the “battle” class of B. P. Willewalde. He obtained permission to study abroad and went to Munich where A. Ye. Kotsebu was at the time. Charlemagne sought his advice and then painted pictures on subjects from Suvorov’s Italian and Swiss campaigns. In 1861 Charlemagne returned to Russia and in 1867 was recognized as a professor. He painted various pictures such as “The Life-Guards Horse Regiment Taking the French Flag of the 4th Line Regiment at Austerlitz, 1805 (1852), “The Guards at Rest in a Village during the 1851 Maneuvers,” and “The Life-Guards 6th Don Cossack Battery Crossing the Balkans, 1877” (1879). In the last of these an artillery column under the command of Rauch is depicted as it makes its way along a mountain trail. The Turks had dug in on the Pravetsk heights and thus halted the Russian advance through the Balkan Mountains, so the Russian high command had decided to go around the position and come out into the Turks’ rear. Rauch’s column carried out this mission from 9 through 11 November 1877. With the help of ropes the artillerymen are barely able to keep the guns and limbers from falling over the precipice.


Another of Charlemagne’s canvases—“The Life-Guards Horse Regiment Taking the French Flag of the 4th Line Regiment at Austerlitz, 1805”—tells how during the Battle of Austerlitz two squadrons of Russian Horse Guards under Colonels Olenin and Ozherovskii put the French to flight when they tried to attack the Preobrazhenskii Regiment. While pursuing the enemy, Private Gavrilov of the Horse Guards saw a French ensign carrying a flag fall down. Gavrilov jumped down from his horse, grabbed the flag, and just managed to hand it to Private Omel’chenko before being struck down by French bayonets. This is the moment depicted by the painting.


Besides oil paintings, A. I. Charlemagne produced many gauches, watercolors, and a very large number of drawings to illustrate Russian books on everyday, historical, and military subjects. His fame as an illustrator was widespread. In 1873 he received the title of court painter for having completed watercolors of military scenes and various parades and maneuvers. All in all, Charlemagne was a typical representative of academic art in the middle of the last century.


Another of B. P. Willewalde’s students was K. N. Filippov (1830-1878), whose work was neither like that of his teacher nor of A. Ye. Kotsebu. Filippov took the first steps in establishing a new path for the theme of battle in art: the depiction of war primarily from the aspect of the hardship and tragedy that fall upon the people—the mass of soldiers and the civilian populace. He was one of the first and few Russian artists contemporary with the Crimean campaign of 1854-1855 who showed this war in his work. In our museum we have K. N. Filippov’s painting “Cossacks on Campaign” (1851).


During the Crimean War he was with the Russian army in the Crimea and was an eyewitness of the “Sevastopol Calvary.” His impressions from the Danube and Crimean campaigns were reflected in a number of sketches from life and paintings made later. From 1864 Filippov was in the Caucasus at the disposal of the viceroy and in the middle of the 1870s he completed a series of genre paintings from life in the Caucasus. Filippov’s last works were sketches from the Trans-Caucasus front during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878, where he was an artist in General Geiman’s column.





The mighty current of democratic realism that grew out of the upswell of democracy in Russia at the end of the 1850s and into the ‘60s, and which developed further in close relationship with the Russian liberation movement of the following decades, spread through all aspects of advanced Russian culture, including the graphic arts.


Democratic realism became the central highway for Russian art. N. G. Chernyshevskii’s famous dissertation “On the Esthetic Relation of Art to Reality” was especially influential in the development of realistic art. It confirmed the materialistic proposition that “beauty is life,” that the purpose of art is not only the accurate representation of reality, but also to pronounce judgment on its negative manifestations with the goal of changing them in the interest of the people.


Russian genre painting in the beginning of the 1860s was the first in the field of representational art to enter upon this path. In its wake, naturally, was pulled Russian landscape painting. It was harder for Russian historical art to take this way forward as it was more closely connected to the “bulwarks” of academia. But even this field was included in the stream of realistic art in the works of N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburskii, L. F. Lagorio, V. G. Schwarz, and others.


In the beginning of the 1870s leading Russian realistic artists united in a Society of Progressive Art Exhibits, putting on their banner the slogans of artistic realism, nationality, and populism. As their mission they proposed acquainting wide spheres of democratic society with realistic art by arranging progressive exhibitions in St. Petersburg, Moscow, and Russia’s other large cities.


Russian battle art remained outside the mainstream of realism longer than other genres since it was so closely connected not only to academia but also Russia’s highest ruling circles and their official commissions. Still, even in Russian battle art of the mid-19th century their appeared elements of social justice, and the move toward of realism became more definite. If one examines the catalogs of academic exhibitions from the 1860s onward and then the catalogs of progressive exhibits, one finds only a small number of battle works in the academic shows of the 1860s and ‘70s. In the 1880s their numbers noticeably increase, and at the same time the main theme becomes the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878.


The works of battle artists of the second half of the 19th century such as A. D. Kivshenko, N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii, P. O. Kovalevskii, and others are dedicated to events from recent Russian military history—the fighting in Central Asia, in the Caucasus and on the Danube, and the Russo-Turkish and Eastern wars. Many artists traveled to the theaters of military operations where they had rich and diverse fields of subjects to observe. Often they saw both the publicized side of war and its hidden side. They studied the Russian soldier. They studied the lands and particular conditions under which the wars were conducted. Such rich material, such direct confrontation with large-scale social events could only be beneficial for artists who had dedicated themselves to battle art.


The influence of Russian realistic social genre made even academic battle art of the second half of the 19th century more realistic and to a greater or lesser extent introduced democratic elements. These elements of realistic simplicity and national characteristics also created that new aspect that distinguished battle art of the second half of the 19th century from the pervasive traditional modes and theatric effect in art of the first half of the century. To one extent or another these elements were inherent in all Russian battle artists of this period, both those who were close to the progressives (A. D. Kivshenko and P. O. Kovalevskii) and those who were more closely tied to academic circles (N. D Dmitriev-Orenburgskii, L. F. Lagorio, and others).


One must also take into account that in the second half of the 19th century even the wars themselves looked different from those of the previous half century. Advancements in military technology, increased ranges of small arms and artillery, and the closely related new tactical formations for conducting combat—no longer closed columns but widely spaced lines—all these radically changed the very “picture” of war, and consequently in art since battle paintings were a reflection of changing reality.


For all battle artists of the realism school the greatest successes were scenes in which the central role was played by the ordinary man, the mass of soldiers as a living human collective comprised of typical characteristic persons. That is to say, greatest success was achieved when their battle canvases contained the best elements of the genre of daily realism.


The 19th century, especially during the reign of Nicholas I, was rich in artists working in the genre of battle paintings. The battle artists A. I. Ladurner, B. P. Willewalde, F. Krüger, P. Hess, N. N. Karazin, A. D. Kivshenko, and N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii, and the painters P. O. Kovalevskii, L. F. Lagorio, P. P. Sokolov, P. P. Vereshchagin, and others dedicated their canvases to the most varied episodes of Russia’s military history. In this field, in the art collection of the Military History Museum of Artillery, Engineer Troops, and Signals Troops (VIMAIViVS) the most valuable and interesting works are those which tell of the Russian army’s soldiers, including engineer troops, in battles, military life, and training.


Already in the distant past the fortification of terrain for battle was widely practiced, and it was for this that defensive works were created and defensive lines built along the borders of the Russian state. In steppe regions the enemy’s path was blocked by earthen walls with ditches and in forested areas by mighty wooden barricades, the “cut lines” or “zaseki.” The so-called “mysovye,” or stone, fortifications were erected mostly in the lands of Novgorod and Pskov. Here a fort would be built at the confluence of two rivers and the third side fortified with walls with embrasures and ditches. This kind of town fortress is depicted in V. M. Izmailovich’s painting “A Russian Town Fortress of the 15th to 16th Centuries.” On this canvas, commissioned by the Historical Artillery Museum in 1936, we see a compact many-cornered structure with sides made of terraced walls alternating with square towers. The upper, middle, and lower levels are arrayed in three circles with chessboard precision. The fortress is surrounded by a water-filled ditch.


Not without interest is the fact that in its own time a series of pictures dedicated to fortress construction appeared in the holdings of the Engineer Castle. In April 1845, during an inspection by Nicholas I of models of Novogeorgievsk in the Nicholas Engineer School, someone in the emperor’s suite expressed the desirability of copies of views of this Vistula fortress, held in the Tsarskoe Selo palace, being placed in the school. The emperor ordered the immediate transfer of the originals of all eleven of the oil paintings to the Engineer Castle. Later, in May 1849, Nicholas I sent to the Engineer Castle two canvases by the artist M. Zaleski depicting the fortress of Zamoste, and two years later—two more pictures by the same artist showing the Bobruisk fortress.


There is an interesting story in how the Polish artist Marin Zaleski (1796-1877) created the series of views of fortresses in the Vistula region on Russia’s western borders. Field Marshal I. F. Paskevich had been named viceroy of the Kingdom of Poland in 1832. From 1839 to 1848 M. Zaleski, on orders from Ivan Fedorovich, made several trips to fortress locations and drew views of Modlin (as Novogeorgievsk was called), Zamoste, and Brest-Litovsk, comprising the series “Fortress Towns of Russia’s Western Border and the Kingdom of Poland.” Since M. Zaleski completed this work on commission from the War Ministry, and did so brilliantly, he was awarded a diamond ring and a sum of money. M. Zaleski’s paintings enjoyed their due appreciation from viewers, as at an exhibition in Warsaw “View of Novogeorgievsk Fortress” won an award. Another of the artist’s canvases—“Ivangorod (near Warsaw)”—shows the fortress on the right bank of the Vistula at the juncture of rail lines from Warsaw, Lublin, Radom, and Brest-Litovsk. Yet another painting from the series is “Exterior View of the Fortress of Brest-Litovsk.” The fortifications at Brest-Litovsk were built under the direction of Engineer-General I. I. Dehn. While walking about the bastion on an inspection of the fortress, Emperor Nicholas I turned to those standing by and said, “Thank you! From everything it is clear that the engineers here are conscientiously working out of honor and ambition. The fortress is being maintained in the most perfect order, better than I am used to seeing. Thank you!”


And finally—the picture “Bobruisk Fortress.” The artist was never at Bobruisk, but the scene of the town was made from numerous sketches. This fortress is connected with deeds performed by Russian soldiers in the first half of the 19th century. During the Patriotic War of 1812 soldiers from Miner and Pioneer companies compelled the forces of Napoleon to besiege Bobruisk for four months, thus delaying his further progress.


In the 19th century lower ranks in the Russian army had to be able to do many things: cut turf, bundle fascines, and weave gabions, which is to say carry out the more simple of engineering work. In the artist A. I. Gebens’ painting “Sappers of the 1st Guards Sapper Company at Work” we find evidence of many of the aforementioned tasks. It is no surprise that there are a large number of pictures in which are found aspects of fortification, defensive engineering works, barriers, palisades, sections of underground mining galleries, fortification equipment, and tools for reconstruction. An example is N. N. Karazin’s painting “The Turkestan Column Crossing the Amu-Darya River at Sheikh-Aryk from 18 to 22 May 1873.” As a battle painter N. N. Karazin (1842-1908) first became known in the 1880s upon finishing a series of pictures for the Winter Palace, the subject of which were the wars in central Asia. One of his eight canvases is kept by the VIMAIViVS. On it the artist depicted the Turkestan column under the command of Engineer-General K. P. Kaufman making a river crossing. K. P. Kaufman was a member of the Russian Geographic Society and had finished the Main Engineering School, and served in engineer units of the Western and Caucasus districts. He took part in the Crimean War as commanding a sapper battalion, and was at the blockade, storming, and capture of Kars in 1855. In 1867 he was named commander of the Turkestan Military District, and in 1873 led an expedition of Russian troops across the waterless steppe to Khiva. The expedition ended with the capture of Khiva and the conquest of the Khivan khanate. For this campaign K. P. Kaufman was awarded the Order of St. George 2nd class.


N. N. Karazin possessed a rare sensibility as well as creative imagination and invention in technique. If to these qualities is added a dynamic knowledge of military affairs (the artist was present on several battlefields), it is not surprising that his compositions are rich in figures, full of movement, original in effect, and painted with impressionistic beauty. While undoubtedly a gifted artist and possessing a vast store of knowledge from his personal experience in life and war, so valuable for a battle painter, he never received a finished artistic education and was more of a talented dilettante in the field of workshop art rather than a professional fine artist. Moreover, his nature and the character of his talent made sketching more difficult for him than making large painted canvases. With verisimilitude and conviction Karazin’s paintings exclusively showed the hardships of the Russian army’s central Asian campaigns and the courageous surmounting of these difficulties by the Russian soldier, who the artist knew well and greatly admired from his own military life as an officer in Turkestan. In sum the military art of N. N. Karazin with all its deficiencies are still an artistic and historiographic treasure for us which he created with the truthfulness and emotion of an eyewitness, being the work of a soldier artist and participant of the Russian army’s hard campaigns in central Asia.


Several pictures from the museum’s art collections tell of sieges and captures of fortresses, and of the engineer troops who prepared these operations and took part in them. We will name some of them:


“The Storming of Izmail, 1780,” by F. P. Usypenko. The famous Russian commander A. V. Suvorov prepared his troops to storm the besieged fortress of Izmail. Several days were spent in intense preparation: finishing scaling ladders, binding fascines, and positioning artillery pieces. Also, on A. V. Suvorov’s orders fortifications similar to those of the Turks were built not far from the fortress and used by Russian regiments to drill the movements for storming a strongpoint. The picture was painted in the M. B. Grekov Studio of Military Artists on the order of the museum in 1957.


“The Storming of Akhaltsykh Fortress, 15 August 1828,” by Ya. Sukhodol’skii. This depicts the storming by Russian troops of the Turkish fortress of Akhaltsykh—after Kars the second most formidable strongpoint at the time of the Russo-Turkish War of 1828-29. This is truly where all the infantrymen had to know how to assault enemy fortifications and overcome engineering obstacles! In the foreground the artist shows the Russian infantry units seizing a palisade and bastion, and in the background—the fortress walls crowded with fierce Turkish warriors. After a furious night battle the remnants of the Turkish garrison sought shelter in the citadel (on a separate height in the left background) and surrendered on the morning of 28 August 1828. With the capture of Akhaltsykh fortress by Russian forces the Turks lost the second strongest point (after Kars) in the 1828-1829 Russo-Turkish War’s Trans-Caucasus theater of military operations.


An equally fierce battle was fought in front of the fortress town of Ochakov when it was besieged during the Russo-Turkish War of 1787-1791. There Russian forces under the command of Prince G. A. Potemkin not only performed miracles of courage and endurance (the siege of the fortress dragged on for several months, prompting court wits to dub it “the siege of Troy”), but also demonstrated their ability to apply in practice their knowledge of the arts of military engineering and siegecraft. Much engineering and siege work was conducted at Ochakov: the outlying parts of the fortress were damaged, galleries for explosive mines were pushed forward, many trenchworks and saps were dug. It was only after all this, when early snow had fallen and the Russian army had begun to suffer from sickness and hunger, that 6 December was set as the date to storm Ochakov. Before this day continuous gunfire from the left breach battery caused parts of the fortress to collapse. Ya. Sukhodol’skii’s picture “The Storming of Ochakov, 1788” shows the moment Russian troops rushed into the citadel through gaps in the fortress walls.


One more painting in this series by Ya. Sukhodol’skii is “The Storming of Kars Fortress, 23 June 1828.” It was painted in 1839 and came to our museum in 1930 from the State Hermitage. The picture shows the battle conducted by Russian troops for the fortress of Kars—the Turks’ most important strongpoint in the Trans-Caucasus. On the left is the northern part of the fortress, descending to the river by a stony precipice. Jäger (infantry, rifle) battalions move in columns to the fortress’s defensive perimeter as it is stormed by the leading units. Clumps of smoke and flashes of cannon fire are visible—this is the artillery (in the left foreground) bombarding the fortifications. In the foreground in the right corner is an explosion of a shell that kills two horses. In the center at the painting’s lower edge is a destroyed artillery piece. A little higher a wounded Russian soldier lies on the ground, his comrade bent over him.


The soldiers in the assault were highly excited as they broke into the enemy camp. An unequal fight ensued, and Graf Paskevich sent a grenadier regiment to save a handful of jägers. The battle took place in the streets of the Armenian suburb, and the town was set on fire in three places by Russian shells. At the decisive moment the troops, all together as if at a signal, even though they could not see each other, as one rushed at the fortress from all sides. Soon all bastions and towers were in our hands. Kars surrendered; two white flags were raised on the citadel’s walls. The capture of Kars, considered an unconquerable stronghold, was the first important victory gained by Russian troops in the war and led to the successful development of operations in the Trans-Caucasus theater when Graf I. F. Paskevich’s small corps took Akhaltsykh, Ardahan, and Bayazet.


Emperor Alexander II decided to complete the Winter Palace’s Military Gallery with paintings depicting the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78, and with the unprecedented stipulation that the work be assigned to Russian artists. Fifty-six of the military campaign’s most important events were selected. A beginning was made in the 1890s under Alexander III who gave the task of selecting artists and assigning them their subjects to his brother—Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich, president of the Academy of Arts. The series attracted the battle artists A. D. Kivshenko, A. Ye. Kotsebu, P. O. Kovalevskii, N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii, L. F. Lagorio, and others. Two unprecedented conditions were laid down: the locale had to be drawn from life and the depiction of main actors had to be portraits. All artists were also required to adhere to documentary accuracy in presenting military events and refrain from pompousness.


N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii (1837-1898) was one of the most active participants in creating the series of paintings for the Winter Palace’s Military Gallery depicting the Russo-Turkish War. He was the son of a roads and communications engineer who owned an estate in Orenburg Province. After moving to St. Petersburg with his parents, Dmitriev-Orenburgskii prepared to enter service as a military engineer, but thanks to his drawing ability was able to enter the Academy of Arts’ class for historical artists (he became a student of the academy’s rector, F. A. Bruni). His interest in military affairs influenced his decision to become a battle painter. N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii painted twelve pictures for the Winter Palace (five of which were made in Paris after going to Bulgaria to make studies, and the rest were done in St. Petersburg). In producing the paintings of events to which he was not an eyewitness, the artist used information gathered from official reports and accounts by participants of the war, and traveled to the sites where the battles had taken place. The strongest aspect of his paintings is the precise and detailed sketch work.


N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii’s “The Russian Army Crossing the Danube at Zimnitsa, 15 June 1877” (painted in Paris in 1883) is acknowledged as his best work for the Military Gallery. It depicts a critical moment as the main column of Lieutenant General M. I. Dragomirov’s 14th Division forces a crossing of the river near Sistovo. It is the third wave, when along with the division commander cross General M. D. Skobelev, the division staff, and adjutants.


This series by the artist also includes “Surrender of the Fortress of Nicopol, 4 July 1877” (painted in Paris in 1883). On this canvas is the commandant Hassan Pasha (on a white horse) with his suite as he turns Nicopol over to General Krüdener, commander of the Danube Army’s 9th Corps. From the gates, over which Russian soldiers set up a Russian flag, exit soldiers of the Turkish garrison and the town’s populace.


N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii’s “Taking of the Grivits Redoubt, 30 August 1877” was painted in St. Petersburg in 1885. The picture shows the result of a desperate assault by a combination of Russian and Romanian troops on a redoubt on the Grivits River, one of the numerous Turkish fortifications encircling Plevna. In the center is a Russian standard emplaced on the wall of the redoubt. The fighting was so fierce and so much blood was spilled that the Grivits redoubt was dubbed Kanly-tabiya (“the bloody strongpoint”).


The battle painting “The Last Fight at Plevna, 28 November 1877” (also called “The Taking of Plevna by Russian Troops”) was painted by N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii in 1889. This picture shows grenadiers of Lieutenant General I. S. Ganetskii’s corps fighting Turkish units of Osman Pasha trying to break out of the besieged town. Two reserve regiments came up to help the grenadiers and the outcome of the battle became a foregone conclusion. On 28 November Osman Pasha (wounded in the leg during this battle) surrendered at the head of the Turkish garrison. General M. D. Skobelev was named military governor of Plevna and the surrounding fortified region.


The battle artist Aleksei Danilovich Kivshenko, born in Tula Province, was the peasant son of Graf Sheremetev, and his drawing talent attracted the attention of the artist I. N. Kramskii. He finished the Academy of Arts with large and small gold medals for works he entered in competitions, and later produced several works on the theme of the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-78. The painting “Battle of the Shipka Pass, 11 August 1877” (1893) was dedicated to the heroic defense of Shipka (the so-called “Shipka siege” which lasted over five months). For three days a small number of soldiers of the Orel Regiment along with Bulgarian militia (under the command of General N. G. Stoletov) held off attacks by Suleiman Pasha’s forces which were five times larger.


A. D. Kivshenko’s painting “The Battle at Shipka and Sheinovo, 28 December 1877” (with a second title of “The Last Battle of Plevna. Fighting at the Village of Sheinovo and Shipka and the Capture of the Entire Shipka Army, 28 December 1878”) was made in 1894. It depicts the attack by General M. D. Skobelev (“the White General,” or as the Turks called him—“Ak pasha”) on Turkish positions in the Sheinovo forest.


There are several canvases in our museum by other artists who also devoted their work to events in the Caucasus theater of operations. For example, P. P. Vereshchagin’s “Bombardment of the town of Rushchuk, 14 June 1877” concerns an event near the town of Sistovo that preceded the Russian army’s crossing at Zimnitsa. For three days the towns of Rushchuk, Nicopol, and Vidin were subjected to artillery fire in order to distract the enemy and wholly disorient the Turks. A Turkish corps of 21,000 men was in Rushchuk. Another painting with a Danube theme is P. P. Sokolov’s “Bulgarian Refugees Crossing a Pontoon Bridge over the Danube River, July 1877.” This unpretentious canvas tells of the Russian army’s humanitarian mission, of helping the Bulgarian people—their bratushki, or “little brothers.” Across a pontoon bridge moves an endless line of Bulgarian refugees, among whom are old people, children, and women, with household goods, carts, and wagons. All these peaceful civilians hurry to a safer place across the Danube River, farther from the explosions, shells, and bullets. An interesting object in the picture is the minelayer cutter, and invention of Russian naval mine layers.





At the end of the 1880s a new generation of Russian academic battle artists came forward. From the older generation these artists inherited the tradition of treating the theme of battle realistically. For a time battle artists at the end of the century sought out and found fresh and original compositions and in their canvases achieved clear expression and realistic truth. They did not, however, seek universally relevant ideological and psychological missions, but remained artists of realism striving to create academically finished and compositionally framed paintings of professional quality. Above all others, it the name of A. N. Popov that is connected with this generation of Russian academic battle painters as one of its most gifted representatives.


Aleksei Nikolaevich Popov (1858-1917) was born in Pronsk, Ryazan Province, and attended first the 2nd Moscow Military Gymnasia and then the 1st Paul Military School, from which he was graduated as an officer with the rank of lieutenant. Attached to the St.-Petersburg Fortress Artillery at the end of 1880, he had the opportunity in his free time when not on military duty to visit classes at the Academy of Arts. His studies in military school along with army service gave him that firsthand knowledge of military affairs and personnel that is so necessary for a serious battle artist. Naturally, it was not easy to combine army duties with completing a course at the Academy of Arts, but the young artist was not dismayed by these obstacles.


As an artist he had his own style. The most laudable aspect of Popov’s best paintings, their point of strength—lies in their dynamism, their ability to convey expressive movement in groups of persons and single figures. The artist was likewise successful in depicting the psychology of soldiers as a group, but a deep analysis of individual psychology was beyond his ability. Popov’s strongest work is “Defense of the ‘Eagle’s Nest’ by Men of the Orlov and Bryansk Regiments, 12 August 1877,” which is one of the best creations by battle artists on the theme of the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878. The picture depicts a steep slope along which Turks in dark-blue uniforms and red fezes make their way up, lined up behind an outcropping of rock. Russian soldiers are seen on the upper slope of the cliff side, defending themselves not only with bayonets but with large rocks that they push downward. This fierce and vicious fight brings to mind the legendary times of the far past. The poses of the Russian soldiers are strained to the limit; their faces—almost bronze in the burning light of the mountain sun. The Turks crawl upward with a king of fanatic stubbornness, but one senses that the defenders of the Eagles’ Nest will not retreat a single step and will repel the enemy’s attacks. Everything in this very dramatic scene is painted with razor-sharp expression and strict verisimilitude.


The painting was shown at the Academy’s 1894 exhibition under the title of “Hard Work at Shipka.” In regard to this painting A. Kiselev wrote in an article in an 1894 issue of Artist, “This is an episode from the defense of Shipka when on 12 August soldiers of the Orel and Bryansk regiments on the top of their Eagles’ Nest repeled a Turkish force crawling up from below, and is lively and colorfully transmitted in expressive sunlight. The extreme steepness of the mountain on which the fighting takes place and the almost regular arrangement on it of the struggling groups almost in the same depth of field somewhat detracts from the realistic impression. …But there is much expression and life in the figures. The momentum of the attack and the desperate resistance are wonderfully conveyed. The painting is energetic, and the colors true and strong.”


Another characteristic figure in Russian academic battle painting of the late 19th and early 20th centuries was V. V. Mazurovskii, who debuted at the academic exhibition of 1887 along with A. N. Popov.


Viktor Vikent’evich Mazurovskii (1859-c.1917) was born in Poland. He received his primary artistic education in a Warsaw drawing class (1876-1877) and then entered the St.-Petersburg Academy of Arts and studied under Professor B. P. Willewalde. After a year abroad starting in 1889 as a sponsored student of the Academy of Arts, Mazurovskii worked for three years in Russia, again in the status of student. He stayed with various regiments and studied the life in the Russian peacetime army. Mazurovskii created a series of pictures of maneuvers and parades, and numerous portraits (“Portrait of Dmitrii Konstantinovich, Grand Duke, Commanding the Life-Guards Horse Grenadier Regiment from 1893, in the Uniform of this Regiment,” “Military Personnel of the Life-Guards Dragoon Regiment in the Period from 1897 to 1907,” “Non-Commissioned Officer Ponomarev of the Life-Guards Dragoon Regiment Approaching a Turkish Sentry Near Philippopol,” and others).


V. V. Mazurovskii completed many paintings of historical battle subjects from the wars with Napoleon: “Attack of Russian Cavalry on a French Battery during the Battle of Borodino” (1902), and “The Battle of Friedland, 2 June 1807” (Early 20th century).


The First World War was depicted by V. V. Mazurovskii in a number of compositions such as “Russian Infantrymen on Campaign during the First World War, 1914-1918,” “Attack by the ‘Savage Division’ on Austrian Infantry,” “Russian Cavalry in Battle with Germans in a Village, 1915,” and “Germans Under the Command of Major Preisker Executing by Firing Squad the Russian Treasurer of the Town of Kaliscz, 22 July 1914” (sketch, 1914).


In his battle paintings Mazurovskii usually depicted cavalry attacks and skirmishes with a sharp and penetrating eye, and was an indisputable master in showing the movement of horses and riders in unusual contortions held only for an instant. Their motion is transmitted with attractive animation. A striving for dynamic expression, an interest in expressive details, and along with these an episodic subject to one extent or another are characteristic for all of V. V. Mazurovskii’s work.


The most prominent figure in Russian academic battle painting of the late 19th and early 20th centuries was Frantz Alekseevich Roubaud [Rubo] (1856-1928), the creator of many battle canvases, for the most part on subjects from Russia’s wars in the Caucasus, and of grand battle panoramas. F. A. Roubaud, French in origin, was born in Odessa in Russia, and there received his first artistic training in a local drawing school. In 1877 he traveled to Munich and entered the arts academy, and after finishing here he returned to Russia, to the Caucasus, with which his artistic interests were henceforth linked. Roubaud worked on an extensive series of pictures for the Tiflis Military Historical Museum (the “Temple of Glory”), received deserved fame, and became a professor—the director of the battle painting studio of the St. Petersburg Academy of Arts. In 1908 Roubaud was recognized as an academician and in 1910 became an active member of the Academy. As an artist he painted many pictures of historical battles in the Caucasus and central Asia, as well as of local every day scenes. F. A. Roubaud died in Munich on 13 March 1928.


Of undoubted interest is “The Battle of Borodino, 26 August 1812 (The Third French Attack)” by F. Roubaud and K. Bekker. This painting shows the clash of massed horsemen during the Battle of Borodino. Along with a very large number of figures in the picture there is compositional precision and a skillful ability to arrange large mounted masses in a wide landscape so as to convey the dynamics of a cavalry battle without introducing confusion or vagueness in the structure. In the foreground the sacrifice of battle is shown expressively yet with restraint. This picture is of interest as one of the most striking examples of a desire to revive the large academic battle paintings of the first half of the 19th century, which had once again become fresh thanks to the breathing spell provided by the realistic art of the second half of the century.


Canvases with “action in space” are in general characteristic of Roubaud. His pictures are always full of life and movement with interesting content. Roubaud knew how to create grandiose scenes tied to far distances, magnificently transmitting landscape and a sense of space. However, Roubaud’s battle works do not contain any generalized thoughts or psychological depth. Their artistic language is virtuosity and bravura, but at times somewhat sketchy. In his canvases one sometimes senses a flight of distortion and embellishment in decisions regarding color. Such, for example, is his painting on the subject of the Russo-Japanese War “Attack of the Novocherkassk Regiment during the Battle of the Shakha River, 1904” (1907), in which a decorative color combination of darkish blue hills and yellowish sky dominates the attack scene itself, painted somewhat in outline.


Nevertheless, Roubaud’s work is a valuable addition to Russian battle art. His best pictures depict the most significant pages of the Caucasus army’s glorious history with completeness and realistic power. His panoramas have not only great patriotic and historically informative value, but even today may serve as models of this form of depictive art. M. B. Grekov and M. I. Avilov studied under Roubaud. This master of battle painting provided examples of how to compose a picture, connect movement with landscape, find a new perspective for each subject, and for every artistic decision achieve overall harmony and expressive form.


Another artist whose pictures are an adornment to our museum’s collection is Lev Feliksovich Lagorio (1827-1905), who was primarily a painter of maritime subjects but created several pictures for the Winter Palace’s Military Gallery. In 1883 he received a commission for subjects from the 1877-1878 Russo-Turkish War and for the completion of which he made trips to the Black Sea, Balkan peninsula, and the Trans-Caucasus. The result was his painting in the late 1880s and early 1890s subjects from the war in the Trans-Caucasus, among which are “Repulse of the Storming of Bayazet Fortress, 8 June 1877,” and “Relief of the Garrison of the Bayazet Citadel, 28 June 1877,” as well as a picture relating to the Balkan theater of operations—“The Taking of Lovchi, 22 June 1877.” All three paintings belong to our museum.


The task of making a documentarily precise representation of an area of operations, and also of presenting the serious theme of how the army overcame the difficulties of the campaign and military situation, demands that the battle artist pay attention to landscape that is at times complex and grandiose. This is why Lagorio, a professor of landscape painting, was magnificently prepared to create paintings showing the actual locations of events. For this he was indebted both to his Academy training under B. P. Willewalde and to his direct participation in military operations in the Caucasus. These circumstances allowed him to carry out the assignment of painting battle scenes for the Winter Palace’s Military Gallery, all the more so since the subjects of these paintings were mostly connected with mountainous terrain, so familiar to him as an artists.


Two of the above mentioned paintings are united by a common subject and form a diptych. They tell of one of the most heroic pages from 1877-1878 on the Trans-Caucasian front—the famous siege of Bayazet. The heroic small garrison of the Bayazet citadel withstood a 23-day siege of the fortress by enemy forces in overwhelming strength, and endured the most trying conditions of enervating heat, hunger, and thirst. In the final days only a tablespoon of water per day was given to each man. To all suggestions of surrender the fortress commandant, Captain Shtokvich, answered with a decisive refusal: “… Russians do not surrender fortresses, we take them!” Under such adverse conditions the Russian garrison repulsed a fierce assault on the fortress on 10 June 1877. Bombardment had reduced the town to ruined foundations. After 23 days of siege, on 28 June, the heroic garrison of Bayazet was relieved by a Russian force hurrying to their aid under the command of General Tergukasov, who soundly defeated the Turkish corps besieging the fortress.


L. F. Lagorio’s best battle painting is “Repulse of the Storming of Bayazet Fortress, 8 June 1877.” It compositional structure is original and successful. In the left foreground is shown the wide parapet of the high fortress wall, on which rises a stone building with a large arc-shaped window. On the parapet, the building’s flat roof, and in the arc of the half-ruined window are the figures of Russian soldiers firing their weapons. Far below, under the fortress walls and on the mountain slopes in the background, can be seen dense crowds of Turkish soldiers in retreat. The artist successfully creates the convincing impression that the besiegers’ overwhelming numbers have been thrown back from the fortress walls by its heroic defenders. This impression is reinforced by the empty space below in the right foreground. Here there is no enemy, only a few solitary figures pressing close to the foot of the wall. The painting’s golden coloring, the brightly illuminated figures of the Russian soldiers in the foreground, and their sharp shadows falling onto the stone parapet convey an atmosphere of burning heat. Through a certain static aspect in the figures of the Russian soldiers the artist wanted to underscore the calm activity of simple Russian people, courageously carrying out their hard military work without excessive energy. The painting’s strong impression is to no small extent helped by the effective and concretely realistic mountain landscape (with the toothed line of high peaks in the distance, closing the horizon), obviously painted using studies from life.


Another prominent battle painter of the late 19th century was Pavel Osipovich Kovalevskii, who was close to the progressive critical realists even though his work was also well connected to academic circles and he took part in completing the series of paintings on the 1877-1878 war for the Winter Palace. P. O. Kovalevskii (1843-1903) was the son of a Kazan University professor. After attending the Kazan gymnasia, in 1863 he entered the Academy of Arts where he was a student of B. P. Willewalde. In 1873 Kovalevskii went abroad on a stipend from the Academy. During the 1877-1878 campaigns he was an artist with the headquarters of the 12th Corps operating in Bulgaria (with Grand Duke Vladimir Alexandrovich). In 1881 Kovalevskii received the title of professor, and in 1897 he was chosen to be the professor-director of the Academy of Arts’ battle-painting workshop, becoming an active member of the Academy in 1898. He directed the Academy’s battle-painting workshop until his death in 1903, after which F. A. Roubaud took over the position.


P. O. Kovalevskii painted a rather large number of battle pictures, primarily depicting episodes from the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878. In the immediate postwar year he painted the pictures “Russian Cavalry Attack on a Turkish Supply Train, 1877” (1880s), “Russian Cavalry during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878; Before the Attack” (1880s), “Halt by the 140th Zaraisk Infantry Regiment of the 35th Infantry Dvision, 1877” (1880s), and “Infantry Defense in the Balkans during the Russo-Turkish of 1877-1878” (1884). In the 1880s he completed several paintings for the Winter Palace’s Military Gallery, including “Battle of the Lom River, 12 October 1877” (secondary title—“The Affair at the Village of Ivanovo-Chaftlyk, 12 October 1877”).


The subject of the painting is a battle at the village of Ivanovo-Chaftlyk to the south of Rushchuk, on the left bank of the Lom River, on 12 October 1877, in which the 130th Kherson Regiment captured a bridge across the river after an hour’s hard fighting. In the painting the landscape plays a significant role without any sense of artificiality. The general atmosphere of the gloomy, cold, dreary, and misty day is captured wonderfully. The group of soldiers, their movement, the combat on the bridge—all immediately produce an effect on the viewer. The characters are very well chosen and accurately captured without any falsity. The dynamism of the painting is in the Turks who have somehow become confusedly pressed together in a narrow space where they can barely move. In essence, in this battle picture P. O. Kovalevskii remains first of all a genre painter. Not only is the unique landscape of the narrow valley well depicted as it is bordered by the steep slopes of a high plateau with a half-ruined village next to a river, the buildings showing an oriental architecture, but also the figures of the Russian soldiers are painted with great attention.


A review of the exhibition stated: “Of all the battle paintings of the current academic exhibit (1887) the palm branch of first place must be awarded to Mr. Kovalevskii. His painting is not only of great interest, but also notable in a technical sense. (Khudozhestvennye novosti, Vol. V, 1887, No. 8.)


In evaluating Kovalevskii’s work as a battle painter, is must be recognized that he did not intend to convey any universal messages. But his strict realism, the democratic orientation of his work, his firsthand knowledge of war based on personal frontline impressions, and finally, the high professional mastery that the artist demanded of himself all made him one of the best Russian battle painters of the second half of the 19th century.





The historical portrait is closely related to the battle genre. In truth, in Russian art the two genres were an organic whole. With many battle painters, especially of the old academic school, we see a heroic figure—most often the emperor or a great commander or historical personage—in the battle scene or during a parade of the troops. An example of such a portrait can be seen in our museum’s exhibit of a painting of the great Russian commander A. V. Suvorov. It was painted outside Russia in 1815, when Russian forces were still in western Europe after the victorious Patriotic War of 1812, by Karl Steinben (1788-1856), a popular portrait painter of the time. Steiben was German by birth and in his youth studied at the Academy of Arts in St. Petersburg and later in Paris. In the first half of the 19th century the Suvorov portrait belonged to Prince M. S. Vorontsov. It came to our museum in 1937 from the Military History Cultural Museum [Voenno-istoricheskii bytovoi muzei (BIBM)], from the collection of Grand Duke Michael Nicholaevich. There are two copies of this portrait—one in the Suvorov Museum in Konchansk, and another that until 1941 was in the collection of a German palace. In 1840, by now a fashionable portraitist, Steinben came to Russia and spent over ten years here. He produced a series of religious paintings for the Isaac Cathedral and a number of portraits of members of St.-Petersburg society.


The story of how this portrait was made is interesting. A. V. Suvorov was a genius, the pride and glory of Russia, a universally beloved Russian, national hero, and the most popular person in folk memory. But Suvorov has not been well served by his portraits. There are many but they are striking in their variation. Everyone from childhood has the well-fixed canonical image of him, but it is far from the original reality. He was the son of Lieutenant General Vasilii Ivanovich Suvorov and his wife Avdot’ya Fedot’evna Manukova, and was thin and weak. But from childhood he dreamed of glory and a military career. His passionate mind, rich talents, and great willpower helped him harden and prepare himself. He was not like others and did not want to be. Suvorov was of average height and appeared sickly, but from his early years he trained himself to overcome all physical disabilities and psychological doubts. Suvorov’s face was extremely variable and changed constantly. His nerves were always excited so the changes in his features were extraordinary: now he was considerate and affectionate, now severe and threatening, then quiet and serious, but frequently—animated and whimsical, and at still other times weak, then overflowing with life. And all these Suvorovs looked different from one another, having their own characters and features. Inferior to a great many others in birth, wealth, and aristocratic status in the era of Potemkin and the Razumovskii’s, he endeavored to appear as an eccentric, and by his jokes often achieved what others could not get by more usual methods. Many victories and glorious campaigns by Russian troops are associated with the name of the great Suvorov: Focsani and Rymnik (1789), the storming of Ochakov and Izmail in 1790, the Danube, and Italy and Switzerland. All these brought Suvorov not only deserved glory, but many awards: the title of Graf Rymnikskii, the diamond insignia of the order of St. Andrew, the ribbon of St.-George ribbon, the title of Prince of Italy, the rank of generalissimus, and a portrait of the emperor decorated with diamonds.


The Elector of Saxony wanted a portrait of Suvorov to “decorate the Dresden museum, or it might be better said—the museum of Europe.” Suvorov could not stand to see himself in the mirror and completely ignored this piece of furniture in his living quarters. For the same reason he did not like posing for artists and wanted to avoid it: “Say no to him, and tell him I am not a pretty little boy.” But later he gave in. When the artist (Schmidt) came in, Suvorov embraced him, skipped off, and went into a speech (in German), the substance of which was this: “Your brush will paint my features—you can see them, but my inner self is hidden. …I’ve been small—I’ve been big!” And here he jumped up on a chair, and then sat down…


In our portrait Suvorov is shown in full length with bared head in the uniform of Paul I’s reign during the Italian campaign of 1799. He is standing at the base of a hill next to unrolled plans of enemy fortresses. In the distance (in the background) is a northern Italian landscape—a ravine surrounded by mountains, along which march columns of troops. The portrait shows well the commander’s thin high-strung figure along with his face, incline of the head, hair style, and smile. On his breast are the stars and crosses of various orders, and numerous order ribbons are worn over his waistcoat and are only visible under the unbuttoned coat. It is supposed that the artist, K. Steiben, borrowed certain features from other portraits (Schmidt and Frolov). On the other hand, some of the picture’s aspects distinguish it from Schmidt’s and Frolov’s depictions: the round shape of the head, the somewhat turned-up nose. However, the characteristic Suvorov features—a protruding lower lip, bent brows, prominent temples, deep and regular wrinkles on the forehead, and concentrated expression—are also present in Steiben’s portrait. This means that the artist did not follow just one of the general’s earlier portraits, but included in his painting features taken from several of them, apparently guided by advice from one of the many persons still alive who knew Suvorov well. It is possible that this contemporary of the great commander as well as the person who commissioned the portrait was I. V. Sabaneev, the famous fighting general who took part in the 1799 campaign and the Patriotic War of 1812. Steinben’s portrait belonged to M. S. Vorontsov, and among his correspondence is preserved a letter from Sabaneev sent from southern Germany. In this letter of 30 May 1815, Sabaneev wrote, “I am sending you a portrait of Suvorov which I find to be a remarkable likeness, and in our northern hero there is not a single Corsican feature. If you can, make a copy and give me back the original.”


It must be supposed that Vorontsov kept the portrait because one and a half years later (1817) a letter from Sabaneev again asks for a Suvorov picture to be returned, either the original or a copy of it. If we assume that it is this portrait that is being discussed, then it becomes especially interesting for us because Sabaneev was a participant of the Swiss campaign in which he was twice wounded and knew Suvorov intimately, remaining a deep admirer for the rest of his life. According to contemporaries, Sabaneev even looked a little like the great commander in his facial expression and posture.


Our museum possesses two signed copies of a formal portrait of another great Russian military leader—M. I. Kutuzov, from the brush of the artist R. Volkov. This formal portrait of M. I. Golenishchev-Kutuzov is considered one of the best likenesses of the general, diplomat, and statesman who was one of the founders of the Russian art of war and continued the glorious traditions of the great A. V. Suvorov as a general-field marshal and hero of the 1812 Patriotic War. The artist R. M. Volkov (1775-1831) was a student of the St. Petersburg Academy of Arts. It has been suggested that the life portrait of Kutuzov was made by the artist before the general’s departure for the operational army. At the beginning of the 20th century the now venerable portrait of Kutuzov by R. M. Volkov was owned by N. N. Tuchkov and shown at a jubilee exhibit commemorating the 100th anniversary of the Patriotic War of 1812.


One more portrait in our museum is connected with the name of the great commander M. I. Kutuzov. This is a portrait of his father—Engineer Lieutenant General Illarion (Larion) Matveevich Golenishchev-Kutuzov, painted in oils in our time. The story of its appearance in the museum is unusual. In October 1991 an expedition from the public educational and cultural foundation “Secrets of the Century” was searching for the lost Amber Room in the Pskov region. Completely by chance they discovered under a local church a previously unknown burial site in which were two graves. In one grave lay the well preserved body of a Russian army general with a faded red order ribbon across the left shoulder, and in the other were the remains of a woman. From the church records it was possible to determine that the church had been built at the end of the 1770s or beginning of the 1780s by Illarion Matveevich Golenishchev-Kutuzov, and underneath the church was the family sepulcher of the Golenishchev-Kutuzovs. Presumably these were the remains of the great commander’s father and mother. The members of the museum’s M. I. Kutuzov section, established in 1991 in the VIMAIViVS, were fully informed of this surprising discovery.


In 1997 the senior academic member of the Pskov Regional Museum, L. N. Makeenko, came to an academic conference hosted in our museum dedicated to the 185th anniversary of the start of the 1812 Patriotic War and in fact to the 250th anniversary of M. I. Kutuzov’s birth. He presented our museum with a book he had written on notable people of the Opochets District. In the pages of the book dedicated to I. M. Golenishchev-Kutuzov was his portrait, executed in pencil by the St.-Petersburg artist V. I. Mikhailov. Upon the invitation of the Pskov Regional Museum he had made the pencil sketch after visiting the sepulcher under the church. With the pencil portrait of I. M. Golenishchev-Kutuzov, we turned to the directors of the Trade Arts Academy (formerly the V. I. Mukhina Art School) with a proposal that they have an oil portrait done. In the spring of 1998 a student of the fifth level, Nadezhda Ionova, began work under the direction of her academic instructor K. V. Leshchinskii. To help her there were made available from the museum’s collections colored drawings of the uniform for a lieutenant general of engineers of the late 18th century and insignia of the order of St. Anne which, in all likelihood, Illarion Matveevich received for distinction in the summer campaign of 1770.


By the summer of 1998 the portrait of Illarion Matveevich Golenishchev-Kutuzov was finished and it received high ratings from specialists. It was accepted by the museum’s collections commission and took its deserved place in the exhibit dedicated to the great commander’s family.


From the brush of academic painter N. G. Schilder came portraits made for the museum of Lieutenant General I. I. Dehn 1st, Engineer-General A. K. Gerua, Grand Duke Nicholas Nicholaevich Senior, Alexander III, Colonel Laskovskii, and other prominent military, scientific, and government leaders. These are thirty portraits in all, according to the museum’s archival data.


Two items are copies by unknown artists of works by D. Dawes—“Portrait of Karl Ivanovich Opperman” and “Portrait of Petr Kornil’evich Sukhtelen.” These are typical formal quarter-length portraits of two prominent military engineers and government officials in which they are shown with all the regalia and orders earned by them for military engineering work. The first portrait is of K. I. Opperman—Graf, general of engineers, former member of the State Council, director of the Engineering and Construction departments, head of the Engineer and Artillery schools, and honorary member of the Academy of Sciences. From 1814 Karl Ivanovich Opperman was involved with the formation of the Engineer Department and organizing sapper troops, and he devoted much work to the founding of the Main Engineer School (1819). He also chaired the commission for the construction of the Isaac Cathedral.


A large old portrait of the famous military engineer E. I. Totleben by an unknown artist is interesting from both an artistic point of view and because of the person portrayed. E. I. Totleben (1818-1884) was one of the organizers of the defense of Sevastopol during the Crimean War of 1854-55, being at that time a lieutenant colonel, and is depicted in the cloak and uniform of the Life-Guards Sapper Battalion. This painting came to our museum from the State Hermitage.


In 1989-1990 a series of portraits of prominent military engineers who were graduates of the Nicholas Engineer Academy was made for the museum by the artist A. A. Babitskii, an instructor at the Institute of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture. Among the subjects are Ts. A. Kyui, D. V. Grigorovich, F. M. Dostoevskii, and K. A. Trutovskii. From his brush also come several portraits of heroes of the defense of Sevastopol and the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-1905: “Portrait of Rear-Admiral V. I. Istomin,” “Portrait of Rear-Admiral V. A. Kornilov,” “Portrait of Colonel S. A. Rashevskii,” and “Portrait of Staff-Captain A. N. Nikitin—Commander of the Kronstadt Mines Section.”





Modern depictive art in represented in our museum by pictures on subjects from the Revolution and Civil War, but a series of works on the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945 deserves to be pointed out. During the years of that great war the battle genre with a military and patriotic theme had a leading place in art. The chief and definitive content of these canvases is the spirit of patriotism. The pictures were tasked with inculcating courage and pride in the Motherland and her defenders, and with making people believe in their hearts in victory over fascism. The talent of original Russian painters of military and patriotic themes such as N. S. Samokish and M. B. Grekov was developed shoulder to shoulder with the heroes of the war in the dynamic circumstances of great and terrible events. The latter is justly considered the most distinguished Soviet battle painter. The art collection of our museum contains several of M. B. Grekov’s works. Among them are “The Life-Guards Grenadier Regiment at the Battle of Borodino, 26 August 1812,” “The Yaroslav Dragoons Attacking the Swedes,” “The Life-Guards Grenadier Regiment’s Attack on Turkish Positions at Gornyi Dubnyak,” “Attack of His Majesty’s  Life-Guards Cuirassier Regiment, 1813,” “His Majesty’s Life-Guards Cuirassier Regiment’s Attack on a French Battery at Kulm, 18 August 1813,” and “The Life-Guards Pavlovsk Regiment at the Battle of Friedland, 1807.”


Mitrofan Borisovich Grekov was a great Soviet battle painter who created in his canvases an artistic chronicle of immortal events in Russia’s military history. His work has the imprint of life itself, unvarnished, but with the full measure of its trials, bloodshed, and sacrifices. His paintings comprise honor and realism. M. B. Grekov was a student of Repin and his canvases convey the spirit of the time, an era of unprecedented surges of mass heroism. A restrained and clean delineation in his depictive art, a complete absence of the false or polished, a feel for rhythm and beat in the depiction of dynamic battle scenes overflowing with expression and the violence of combat—these are basic to all the works of this master.


In 1934 People’s Commissar of Defense K. Ye. Voroshilov ordered that the Military Artists Studio—a special artistic organization within the army—be named after M. B. Grekov. From the first days of the Great Patriotic War members of the Grekov Studio took their places in the ranks of defenders of the Motherland. They made documental sketches, portraits, and various studies. Such works by the Grekov Studio artists in our museum’s collections include G. K. Savitskii’s “Crossing Near Stalingrad, 1944,” V. N. Yakovlev’s “Session of the Military Artillery Council during the Great Patriotic War,” “Portrait of I. V. Stalin in the Uniform of a Generalissimus of the USSR, 1943,” and N. B. Terpsikhorov’s “A Merry Farewell, 1937.”


In consideration of our museum’s charter, we must first of all note that our collections contain depictions of artillerymen, military engineers, pontoon bridge layers, and mine layers, of battles and river crossings during the Great Patriotic War as well as from our country’s distant military past. These include M. I. Samsonov’s “Scouts, 1943,” “Tanks on the March,” and “The South Tower of Zvenigorod Monastery”; P. P. Sokolov-Skal’s “Artillery at Stalingrad”; F. Usypenko’s “The Storming of Izmail, 1790,” “Night Battle,” and “Destruction of the Japanese Khailar Fortified Region.”


Almost all of the Grekov Studio artists experienced the hard school of war and service in the army, fighting on the frontlines of the Great Patriotic War. Among them were privates and officers, sappers and scouts, artillerymen and tankers, partisans and aviators. Naval Lieutenant M. N. Domshchenko painted “Fighting at Sapun-Gora”, and from a partisan brigade in the forests of Belorussia came the Grekov artists N. I. Obryn’ba (“Artillery in Street Fighting during the Assault on Berlin, 1945”).


Widely known for his many battle canvases is P. A. Krivonogov. Our museum can boast of owning several of this master’s works. These are pictures of the last days of the war in Berlin, such as “2 May 1945 at the Reichstag,” “On the Streets of Berlin, 1945,” and “Horse Artillery in Battle, 1944.” To paint the grievous aftermath of battle is not only difficult, but also a very important responsibility. To truthfully paint those “burned in fire, friends and comrades” is possible only on the basis of a profound understanding of events, the persons who took part in them, and documentary materials. This is one of the unalterable laws of art.


Artists’ creations make it possible for we contemporaries to over and over pass along those frontline roads, to bow our heads before the spirit and strength of the living and the dead, and through the miraculous power of art become participants in the deeds of past generations. Paintings transmit to descendents the memory of the hearts and spirits of these generations, of the tragic and heroic times of catastrophe and hope. In the best works by artists one hears the voice of war, impressed with the seal of experience. Today one still hears the voice of glory from the people’s deeds that do not fade into the past centuries, and the high requiem for the loss borne in war by the people and the whole nation. At the same time these works literally take up the artists’ cry to future generations: Do not let it happen again! Fight for peace! Protect the land from the fire of war!





Page 9. Valerii Krylov, Chief of the Military History Museum of Artillery, Engineer Troops, and Signals Troops.

1. P. Hess. The Battle of Losmina, 6 November 1812. 1854.

2. B. P. Willewalde. Feat of the Horse Regiment at the Battle of Austerlitz in 1805. 1884.

3. A. Ye. Kotsebu. Storming of the Fortress of Noteburg 11 October 1702. 1846.

4. A. Ye. Kotsebu. The Battle of Narva 19 November 1700. 1846.

5. A. Ye. Kotsebu. The Taking of the Colberg Fortress on 6 December 1762. 1852.

6. A. I. Sauerweid. The Battle of Leipzig from 2 to 7 October 1813. 1840s.

7. B. P. Willewalde. The Engineer Attack on Varna Fortress by the Sapper Battalion on 23 September 1828. 1836.

8. B. P. Willewalde. The Battle of Grochow, 13 February 1831. Mid-19th century.

9. B. P. Willewalde. The Battle of Bashkadyklar, 19 November 1853. 1855.

10. B. P. Willewalde. The Cavalry Attack at Bashkadyklar, 19 November 1853.  1855.

11. B. P. Willewalde. The Life-Guards Horse Regiment at the Battle of Fere-Champenoise, 13 March 1814” 1891.

12. B. P. Willewalde. The Battle of Paris, 17 March 1814. 1834.

13. B. P. Willewalde. Officer of the Life-Guards Lancer Regiment, 1855. Second half of the 19th century.

14. Unknown artist of the Willewalde school. The Life-Guards Horse Regiment in Paris in 1814. Mid-19th century.

15. Unknown artist of the Willewalde school. The Life-Guards Horse Regiment in a German Town in 1813. Mid-19th century.

16. A. I. Charlemagne. The Life-Guards Horse Regiment Taking the French Flag of the 4th Line Regiment at Austerlitz, 1805. 1852.

17. A. I. Charlemagne. The Guards at Rest in a Village during the 1851 Maneuvers. 1851.

18. A. I. Charlemagne. The Life-Guards 6th Don Cossack Battery Crossing the Balkans, 1877. 1879.

19. A. I. Gebens. Military Ranks of the Life-Guards Horse Artillery, 1862-1874. 1864.

20. A. I. Gebens. Military Ranks of the Life-Guards Horse Pioneer Battalion, 1845-1855. 1852.

21. A. I. Gebens. Group of Military Ranks of the Life-Guards 1st Rifle Battalion, 1855-1857. 1857.

22. A. I. Gebens. Group of Military Ranks of the Life-Guards Grenadier Regiment, 1844-1855. 1854.

23. A. I. Gebens. Group of Military Ranks of the Life-Guards 4th Imperial Family Rifle Battalion, 1855-1857. 1858.

24. A. I. Gebens. Group of Military Ranks of the Life-Guards Finnish Rifle Battalion, 1844-1855. 1854.

25. A. I. Gebens. Group of Military Ranks of the Life-Guards 1st Artillery Brigade, 1844-1855. 1855

26. A. I. Gebens. Grand Duke Nicholas Nicholaevich Senior Inspecting the Work of the Guards Sappers at the Mouth of the Neva River. 1856.

27. A. I. Gebens. Group of Military Ranks of the Life-Guards Lancer Regiment, 1830-1840. 1853.

28. A. I. Gebens. Sappers of the 1st Life-Guards Sapper Company at Work. 1850.

29. A. I. Gebens. Guards Horse Grenadiers on Maneuvers. 1851.

30. A. I. Gebens. Singers of the Life-Guards Semenovskii Regiment. 1848.

31. A. I. Gebens. Group of Military Ranks of the Life-Guards Volhynia Regiment, 1858-1867. 1864.

32. A. I. Gebens. Group of Military Ranks of Regiments of the 2nd Guards Infantry Division, 1850s. Circa 1850.

33. A. I. Gebens. Group of Military Ranks of the Guards Équipage, 1844-1855. 1855.

34. K. N. Filippov. Cossacks on Campaign. 1851.

35. I. Lukashevich. Officers of the Life-Guards Polish Grenadier Regiment in the 1813-1825 Period. 1820.

36. I. Lukashevich. Private of the Life-Guards Podolia Cuirassier Regiment in the 1818-1820 Period. 1825.

37. Shevnin. The Siege of Reims by the 8th Infantry Corps under the Command of General-Adjutant Saint-Priest, 1814. 1820.

38. I. Lukashevich. Constantine Pavlovich (1779-1831), Grand Duke and Tsesarevich, in the Uniform of the Life-Guards Podolia Cuirassier Regiment.  1822.

39. A. I. Ladurner. Guards Artillery on Maneuvers, 1830s. 1835.

40. A. I. Ladurner. Patrol of the 1st Squadron of the Life-Guards Hussar Regiment, 1830s. 1838.

41. A. P. Schwabe. Military Ranks of the Life-Guards Horse Grenadier Regiment, 1830s.  1840.

42. A. P. Schwabe. Copy of a Painting by the Artist P. Hess ‘The Battle of Borodino, 26 August 1812.’ Second half of the 19th century.

43. V. F. Timm. The Battle of Fere-Champenoise, 13 March 1814. 1839.

44. F. I. Baikov. The Battle at the Village of Kyuryuk-Dara Near the Fortress of Kars, 24 July 1854. Second half of the 19th century.

45. F. I. Baikov. Patrol of the Guards Cossack Regiment during the War with Sweden in 1808. 1845.

46. Unknown artist. The Retreat of Napoleon’s Army, Pursued by Russian Forces, in 1812. 1850s.

47. A. I. Ladurner. General Vitovt at the Training of the Life-Guards Sapper Battalion. Early 1850s. 1850s.

48. K. Schultz. Russian Infantry on Maneuvers. 1848.

49. G. Schwartz. Summer Encampment of the Life-Guards Preobrazhenskii Regiment, 1848. 1848.

50. G. Schwartz. Guards Maneuvers at Krasnoe Selo, 1847. 1847.

51. Unknown artist. Group of Military Ranks of the Life-Guards Lancer Regiment, Life-Guards Dragoons Regiment, Life-Guards Hussar Regiment, and The Heir and Tsesarevich’s Ataman Regiment from the 1820s to 1840s. Second half of the 19th century.

52. F. Krüger. Soldiers and Officers of Guards Regiments of the Russian Army, 1840s. 1853.

53. M. Zaleski. View of Novogeorgievsk Fortress From the Southeast. 1839.

54. Ya. Sukhodol’skii. The Storming of the Fortress of Kars, 23 June 1828. 1839.

55. P. Sokolov. Bulgarian Refugees Crossing a Pontoon Bridge Over the Danube River, July 1877. 1877.

56. Unknown artist. Artillery Firing From a Battery of Position. Second half of the 19th century.

57. Unknown artist. Attack by Caucasian Mountaineers on a Cossack Watch Post, 1840s.  Second half of the 19th century.

58. Unknown artist. Officers of the 1st and 2nd Life-Guards Artillery Brigades, 1826-1827. Second half of the 19th century.

59. M. Zaleski. View of the Bobruisk Fortress. 1812.

60. M. Zaleski. Exterior View of the Brest-Litovsk Fortress. 1846.

61. M. Zaleski. Interior View of the Brest-Litovsk Fortress. 1846.

62. M. Zaleski. View of the Novogeorgievsk Fortress from a Casemate Balcony. First half of the 19th century.

63. M. Zaleski. Copy of a Painting by the Artists V. I. Mashkov ‘The Storming of the Erivan Fortress, 1 October 1827, by Russian Troops Under the Command of General I. F. Paskevich (1782-1856).’ Second half of the 19th century.

64. M. Zaleski. Interior View of the Novogeorgievsk Fortress in 1839 (Parade in the Fortress). 1847.

65. M. Zaleski. Interior View of the Novogeorgievsk Fortress. First half of the 19th century.

66. M. Zaleski. View of the Construction of Novogeorgievsk Fortress. 1838-1848.

67. M. Zaleski. Entrance to the Polish Bank Building in the Novogeorgievsk Fortress. 1848.

68. M. Zaleski. The Polish Bank Building in the Novogeorgievsk Fortress. 1839.

69. Ya. Sukhodol’skii. The Storming of Ochakov, 6 December 1788.  1853.

70. Ya. Sukhodol’skii. The Storming of the Akhaltsykh Fortress, 15 August 1828. 1839.

71. V. N. Maksutov. The Battle of Chetati, 25 December 1853. 1861.

72. N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii. Surrender of the Nicopol Fortress, 4 July 1877. 1883.

73. N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii. Artillery Battle at Plevna. A Battery of Siege Guns on Grand-Duke Hill. 1890.

74. N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii. The Last Fight at Plevna, 28 November 1877. 1889.

75. N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii. Russian Guards Regiments in Bayonet Fighting with Turkish Infantry on the Sistova Heights, 14 June 1877. 1881.

76. N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii. The Russian Army Crossing the Danube at Zimnitsa, 15 June 1877. 1883.

77. N. D. Dmitriev-Orenburgskii. The Taking of the Grivits Redoubt at Plevna, 30 August 1877. 1885.

78. N. N. Karazin. The Turkestan Column Crossing the Amu-Darya River at Sheikh-Aryk, 18 to 22 May 1873. 1889.

79. P. P. Vereshchagin. Bombardment of Rushchuk, 14 June 1877. Second half of the 19th century.

80. N. N. Karazin. Russian Cavalry Attacking a Turkish Supply Train during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878. 1881.

81. A. A. Kozlov. The Deed of Private Arkhip Osipov of the 77th Tenginsk Infantry Regiment, 22 March 1840. Second half of the 19th century.

82. A. A. Kozlov. The Death of Major General Sleptsov in Battle on the Bank of the Gekhi River, 10 December 1851. Second half of the 19th century.

83. A. D. Kivshenko. The Storming of Ardahan Fortress, 5 May 1877. Second half of the 19th century.

84. A. D. Kivshchenko. The Battle of the Shipka Pass, 11 August 1877. 1893.

85. A. D. Kivshchenko. The Battle of Shipka-Sheinovo, 28 December 1877. 1894.

86. A. D. Kivshchenko. The Nizhnii-Novgorod Dragoons Pursuing the Turks on the Road to Kars during the Battle of Alandzhinsk, 3 October 1877. 1892.

87. P. O. Kovalevskii. Halt by the 140th Zaraisk Infantry Regiment of the 35th Infantry Division, 1877. 1880s.

88. P. O. Kovalevskii. Russian Cavalry Attack on a Turkish Supply Train, 1877. 1880s.

89. G. M. Manizer. Episode from the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878. Second half of the 19th century.

90. I. Pryanishnikov. Lancer Patrol on Maneuvers. Early 1900s.

91. T. Rozen. Two Polish Lancers at a River Bank. 1898.

92. Shchukaev. Military Episode from the Russo-Turkish War of 1828-1829. Second half of the 19th century.

93. G. F. Shukaev. The Battle of the Malakhov Kurgan in Sevastopol in 1855. 1856.

94. I. Zankovskii. Kars. Late 19th century.

95. V. V. Mazurovskii. Military Ranks of the Life-Guards Dragoon Regiment in the Period 1897-1907. Early 1900s.

96. F. Roubaud and K. Bekker. The Battle of Borodino, 26 August 1812 (The Third French Attack on the Raevskii Battery. 1913.

97. L. F. Lagorio. Repulse of the Storming of Bayazet Fortress, 8 June 1877. 1891.

98. P. O. Kovalevskii. Russian Cavalry during the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878; Before the Attack. 1880s.

99. P. O. Kovalevskii. The Affair at the Village of Ivanovo-Chaftlyk, 12 October 1877. 1887.

100. A. Dolgov. Battery of the Life-Guards 1st Artillery Brigade on Maneuvers. 1904.

101. N. N. Bunin. Trumpeter and Officer of the Guards Horse Artillery in the Period 1882-1906. 1892.

102. N. N. Bunin. The Death of General Keller during the Fighting at Yanzelinsk Pass, 1904. 1905.

103. N. N. Bunin. First Sergeant Iustin Ivanovich of the Life-Guards Jäger Regiment in Parade Uniform. 1911.

104. A. P. Safonov. Battery of the Life-Guards 1st Artillery Brigade in an Open Position While on Maneuvers. 1902.

105. V. A. Poyarkov. Cavalier of the Order of St. George, Ensign Afanas’ev of the 10th Finland Rifle Regiment. 1916-1917.

106. M. Kirsanov. Cavalier of the Order of St. George, Officer Candidate Ye. A. Orlov of the 71st Belev Infantry Regiment. 1916-1917.

107. A. P. Safonov. Night Attack by Russian Troops on the Turkish Fortifications at Gornaya Dubnyka. Late 19th century.

108. I. Streblov. Gerasim Raevskii, a Young Sergeant of the 1st Battery of the 33rd Artillery Brigade and Cavalier of the Order of St. George, First World War 1914-1918. 1916-1918.

109. I. Streblov. Unknown Officer Candidate of the Life-Guards 2nd Rifle Regiment. 1916-1917.

110. I. Streblov. I. F. Druzhinin, Officer Candidate Sergeant of the 85th Vyborg Infantry Regiment, Cavalier of the Order of St. George during the First World War 1914-1918, Decorated for the Fighting Near Warsaw in 1914 and 1915 at Lodz, the Village of Weczerki in Lomza Province, and at Postawa. 1916-1917.

111. I. Streblov. N. S. Polishchuk, Officer Candidate of the Life-Guards Petrograd Regiment, Cavalier of the Order of St. George during the First World War 1914-1918, Decorated for the Fighting in 1914 and 1915 at Guro-al’vari, Konstantinov, the suburb of Rzhev, and the Village of Yedinorozhets. 1916-1917.

112. A. P. Safonov. Cross-Country Hunt with Dogs. Late 19th century.

113. A. P. Safonov. Group of Life-Guards Lancers in Sweden in 1808. Second half of the 19th century.

114. V. V. Mazurovskii. Russian Cavalry in Battle with Germans in a Village, 1915. 1915-1916 (presumably).

115. V. V. Mazurovskii. Attack by the ‘Savage Division’ on Austrian Infantry. 1916-1917 (presumably).

116. A. N. Popov. Defense of the ‘Eagle’s Nest’ by Men of the Orlov and Bryansk Regiments, 12 August 1877. 1893.

117. V. V. Mazurovskii. Attack of Russian Cavalry on a French Battery during the Battle of Borodino. 1902.

118. V. V. Mazurovskii. Cavalry Fight on Makotow Field in 1831. Second half of the 19th century.

119. V. V. Mazurovskii. Germans Under the Command of Major Preisker Executing by Firing Squad the Russian Treasurer of the Town of Kaliscz, 22 July 1914. 1915-1916 (presumably).

120. V. V. Mazurovskii. Patrol of Guards Lancers in Poland in 1830. 1892.

121. V. V. Mazurovskii. Grand Duke Dmitrii Constantinovich (1860-1919), Commander of the Life-Guards Horse- Grenadier Regiment. Late 19th century.

122. V. V. Mazurovskii. Russian Infantrymen on Campaign. 1915-1916 (presumably).

123. V. V. Mazurovskii. Attack by the Life-Guards Horse Regiment on French Cuirassiers during the Battle of Friedland, 2 June 1807. 1910-1912.

124. V. V. Mazurovskii. Attack of the 1st Guards Polish Lancer Regiment on a Spanish Battery at the Battle of Somo-Sierra, 30 November 1808. 1900.

125. V. V. Mazurovskii. Non-Commissioned Officer Ponomarev of the Life-Guards Dragoon Regiment Approaching a Turkish Sentry near Philippopol. Late 19th century.

126. F. A. Roubaud. Attack of the Novocherkassk Regiment in the Battle of the Shakh River, 1904. 1907.

127. F. A. Roubaud. Russian Column Crossing a Mountain River, 1855. 1898.

128. N. Borisov. Russian Cavalry Attack in Mounted Formation on a German Battery during the First World War.

129. A. N. Popov. Attack of the Life-Guards Moscow Regiment on Turkish Positions at Arab-Konak, 21-23 November 1877. 1910s.

130. S. Tanskii. Don Cossacks. 1887.

131. N. S. Samokish. A Russian Soldier at His Gun. Late 19th century.

132. V. A. Zverev. Field Sentry Post of the 23rd Nizovsk Infantry Regiment at Lake Naroch. 1914-1917.

133. N. S. Samokish. Dismounted Astrakhan Cossack Firing His Carbine From Behind His Horse. Late 19th century.

134. P. P. Karyagin. ‘The Horror of War. They Reached Their Objective!’ Attack by Russian Infantry on German Trenches. 1918.

135. P. P. Karyagin. Guards Horse Artillery Firing on French Columns during the Retreat of Napoleon’s Army. 1912.

136. P. P. Karyagin. Bayonet Attack, 1904. 1910.

137. P. Kholodnin. To Tsargrad, 907 A.D. 1925.

138. S. Arkhipov. Skirmish Between Russians and Tatars, 13th Century. 1916.

139. I. M. L’vov. Ataman Platov’s Cossacks at the Battle of Borodino. Early 20th century.

140. S. F. Chuprunenko. Zaporozhian Cossacks in a Boat on the Dnieper Rapids, 17th Century. Early 20th century.

141. I. A. Vladimirov. Russian Artillery in Position during the Russo-Japanese War, 1904-1905. 1904.

142. Unknown artist. Grand Prince of Kiev Vladimir Svyatoslavovich (978-1015). Early 20th century.

143. Unknown artist. Aleksei Mikhailovich, from 1645 the Second Tsar from the House of Romanov (1629-1676). 13th century (presumably). [Sic]

144. P. G. Sergeev. Grand Prince of All of Russia Ioann III (1440-1505). 1945.

145. P. G. Sergeev. Tsar and Grand Prince of All of Russia Ioann IV the Terrible (1530-1584). 1945.

146. Unknown artist. Cossack Ataman Yermak Timofeevich (died 1584).  18th century.

147. Unknown artist. Peter I on Horseback at the Scene of One of the Russian Forces’ Battles with the Enemy during the Northern War, 1700-1721.

148. I. K. Kolesov. General-Master of Ordnance Ya. V. Bruce (1670-1735). 1941.

149. Unknown artist. Peter I the Great (1672-1725), Russian Tsar from 1683, Emperor from 1721 to 1725. Early 18th century.

150. Unknown artist. Peter Alekseevich with His ‘Playthings’ on Maneuvers. 1694.

151. I. Belousov. Peter I (1672-1725). 1914.

152. Unknown artist. Peter II (1715-1730), Grandson of Peter the Great, from 1727 Russian Emperor.

153. I. D. Ionova and K. V. Leshchinskii. Lieutenant General of the Corps of Military Engineers Illarion Matveevich Golenishchev-Kutuzov (1718-1784). 1998.

154. Unknown artist. Emperor Peter III (1728-1762) a Colonel in the Russian Army’s Guards Regiments.

155. Unknown artist. General-Field Marshal Prince G. A. Potemkin of Taurica (1739-1791). 1847.

156. L. A. Ostrova. General-Master of Ordnance Graf P. I. Shuvalov (1711-1762). 1947.

157. K. K. Steiben. Graf of Rymnik, Prince of Italy, Generalissimus A. V. Suvorov (1730-1800). 1815.

158. Unknown artist. Emperor Paul I (1754-1801), General-Admiral of the Russian Navy, Colonel-in-Chief of all Guards Regiments. Late 19th century.

159. Unknown copyist. Copy of the Portrait by the Artist D. Dawes ‘Hero of the Patriotic War of 1812, General-of-Infantry Prince P. I. Bagration (1765-1812). Late 19th century.

160. Unknown copyist. Copy of the Portrait by the Artist Volkov ‘General-Field Marshal M. I. Kutuzov (1747-1818). Mid 19th century.

161. S. Komenko. Lieutenant General N. A. Tuchkov (1761-1812), Hero of the Patriotic War of 1812, Commander of the 3rd Infantry Corps. Early 20th century (presumably).

162. A. Morozov. Copy of a Miniature by Bosse ‘Engineer-General P. K. Sukhtelen (1751-1836).’ 1902.

163. Unknown artist. General-Adjutant Graf E. I. Totleben (1818-1884), Military Engineer, Director of Engineering Work during the Defense of Sevastopol in 1854-1855 and the Taking of Plevna in 1877. Late 19th century.

164. N. G. Schilder. Engineer-General I. I. Dehn 1st (1786-1859). First half of the 19th century.

165. Unknown artist. General-of-Artillery and General-of-Infantry A. P. Yermolov (1777-1861), Hero of the Patriotic War of 1812. 1815.

166. A. I. Sauerweid. General-Master of Ordnance Grand Duke Michael Pavlovich (1798-1849), in the Uniform of the Life-Guards 1st Artillery Brigade. Drawn from life. First half of the 19th century.

167. Ertinger. Graf of Erivan, Serene Prince of Warsaw I. F. Paskevich (1782-1856), in the Uniform of the Aleksandriya Hussar Regiment. Second half of the 19th century.

168. I. Tyurin. General-Adjutant and General-of-Artillery Graf A. A. Barantsov 1810-1882), Chief of the Main Artillery Directorate, in the Uniform of the Guards Artillery. Second half of the 19th century.

169. Unknown artist. Grand Duke Nicholas Pavlovich (1796-1855), Inspector General of Engineers, in the Uniform of the Life-Guards Sapper Battalion. First half of the 19th century.

170. Unknown artist. Grand Duke Michael Pavlovich (1798-1849), Inspector General of Engineers, in the Uniform of the Life-Guards Sapper Battalion. First half of the 19th century.

171. N. G. Schilder. Grand Duke Nicholas Nicholaevich Senior (1831-1891), General-Field Marshal, Inspector General of Engineers. Late 19th century.

172. G. N. Yakovlev. Engineer Lieutenant General A. Z. Telyakovskii (1806-1891), Prominent Expert on Fortifications. 1859.

173. N. G. Schilder. Engineer General A. K. Gerua (1784-1852), Chief of the Engineer Department. First half of the 19th century.

174. Unknown artist. Michael Pavlovich (1798-1849), Grand Duke, General-Master of Ordnance in the Uniform of the Life-Guards First Artillery Brigade. Late 19th century.

175. N. A. Lavrov. Alexander II (1818-1881), in the Uniform of the Life-Guards Sapper Battalion. 1868.

176. N. G. Schilder. Emperor Alexander III (1845-1894), in the Uniform of the Life-Guards Sapper Battalion. Second half of the 19th century.

177. Unknown artist. Engineer General N. F. Aleksandrov (1851-1915), Inspector General of Engineers. Second half of the 19th century.

178. A. Leontovskii. Grand Duke Constantine Constantinovich (1858-1915) in 1901, Lieutenant General and Commander-in-Chief of Military Educational Institutions. 1901.

179. M. V. Chernyshov. General R. I. Kondratenko (1857-1904), Hero of the Defense of Port Arthur. 1947.

180. R. Z. Frumak. General-of-Artillery A. P. Engelhardt (1836-1907), Artillery Manufacturing Expert. 1947.

181. Unknown artist. General-Adjutant Graf D. A. Milyutin (1816-1912), Minister of War. Second half of the 19th century.

182. M. P. Gerets. Major General S. I. Mosin (1849-1902), Weapons Constructor, Inventor of the M1891 Three-Line Magazine Rifle. 1941.

183. P. P. Kryzhanovskii. General N. M. Filatov (1862-1935) in 1916, Chief of the Officers Marksmenship School, Expert in Rifle Marksmenship. Portrait made for N. M. Filatov’s birthday, 11 October 1916.

184. P. Ye. Ab. Russian Army Captain F. V. Tokarev (1871-1968), Maker of Automatic Weapons. 1946.

185. G. P. Tatarinkov. Vice-Admiral S. O. Makarov (1848-1904), Prominent Russian Technical Expert, Naval Commander, Hero of the Russo-Turkish War of 1877-1878 and the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-1905. 1951.

186. I. I. Brodskii. Marshal of the Soviet Union K. Ye. Voroshilov (1881-1969), Twice Hero of the Soviet Union, as USSR Peoples Commissar of Defense. 1937.

187. A. M. Lyubimov. N. A. Shchors (1895-1919), Hero of the Civil War, Commander of the 1st Ukraine Soviet Division. 1951.

188. A. M. Lyubimov. V. I. Chapaev (1887-1919), Hero of the Civil War, Commander of the Red Army 25th Rifle Division. 1951.

189. K. D. Kitaika. G. I. Kotovskii (1881-1925) in 1920, Hero of the Civil War, Red Army Cavalry Brigade Commander. 1948.

190. K. Pribytkov. Marshal of the Soviet Union S. M. Budennyi (1883-1973), Hero of the Soviet Union. 1938.

191. Ya. Pichugin. Lieutenant General K. N. Velichko (1856-1927), One of the Foremost Engineers of His Time. 1927.

192. G. N. Bibikov. Marshal of the Soviet Union S. K. Timoshenko (1895-1970), Twice Hero of the Soviet Union, as Commander of the 6th Cavalry Division of the 1st Horse Army in 1920. 1941.

193. I. P. Gal’chenko. V. V. Yakovlev (1871-1945), Lieutenant General of Engineer Troops, Professor, Prominent Fortification Expert. 1943.

194. Shvarev. Copy of the Portrait by the Artist I. I. Brodskii ‘M. V. Frunze (1885-1925).’ 1947.

195. M. P. Gerets. Marshal of the Soviet Union B. M. Shaposhnikov (1882-1945). 1942.

196. D. Medvedev. Marshal of the Soviet Union K. K. Rokossovskii (1896-1968) in 1945, Twice Hero of the Soviet Union. 1945.

197. S. Ye. Podorozhnyi and L. G. Tsvetkova. Hero of the Soviet Union D. M. Karbyshev (1880-1945), Lieutenant General of Engineer Troops, Prominent Specialist in Military Engineering. Brutally Tortured in the Fascist Death Camp at Mauthausen. 1962.

198. V. A. Serov. Colonel General L. A. Govorov (1897-1955), Commander of Forces on the Leningrad Front. 1943.

199. Unknown artist. Generalissimus of the Soviet Union I. V. Stalin (1878-1953). 1945.

200. L. A. Ostrova. Marshal of the Soviet Union A. M. Vasilevskii (1895-1977), Twice Hero of the Soviet Union, Depicted in 1945. 1951.

201. I. S. Sorokin. Colonel General A. A. Zhdanov (1896-1948), during the Great Patriotic War 1941-1945. 1951.

202. V. N. Yakovlev. Generalissimus of the Soviet Union I. V. Stalin (1878-1953). 1945.

203. V. L. Kashutova. Major General of Technical Engineer Services F. F. Petrov (1902-1978), Maker of Artillery Armaments, Hero of Socialist Labor, Four-Time Stalin Prize Laureate. 1951.

204. V. L. Kashutova. G. S. Shpagin (1897-1952), Maker of Small-Arms Weapons, Hero of Socialist Labor, Four-Time Stalin Prize Laureate. 1951.

205. V. L. Kashutova. Major General of Artillery Engineering Services V. A. Degtyarev (1879-1949), Maker of Small-Arms Weapons, Hero of Socialist Labor, Three-Time Stalin Prize Laureate. Depicted during the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945. 1951.

206. P. I. Solomonov. F. V. Tokarev (1871-1968), Maker of Small-Arms Weapons. Depicted during the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945. 1951.

207. L. A. Ostrova. Major General of Technical Troops M. Ya. Krupchatnikov (1897-1947), Hero of Socialist Labor, Doctor of Technology. 1951.

208. M. B. Grekov. The Life-Guards Grenadier Regiment at the Battle of Borodino, 26 August 1812. 1912-1913.

209. M. B. Grekov. Attack by His Majesty’s Life-Guards Cuirassier Regiment in 1813. 1911.

210. M. B. Grekov. The Yaroslav Dragoons Attacking the Swedes at the Village of Erestfer, 29 December 1701. 1914.

211. M. B. Grekov. The Life-Guards Pavlovsk Regiment at the Battle of Friedland, 1807. 1913.

212. M. B. Grekov. Attack by His Majesty’s Life-Guards Cuirassier Regiment on a French Battery at Kulm, 18 August 1813. 1913.

213. M. B. Grekov. Attack by the Life-Guards Grenadier Regiment on Turkish Positions at Gornyi Dubnyak, 12 October 1877. 1914.

214. I. G. Drozdov. The First Red Army Men, 1918. 1924.

215. F. A. Modorov. A Moment of Merriment. 1928.

216. B. V. Smirnov. Laying a Pontoon Bridge. 1928.

217. M. I. Avilov. Horse-Artillery Guns Under Fire. 1930s.

218. S. M. Luppov. Women in Defense. Second half of the 1930s.

219. Ye. Luzhkovskii. Copy of the Picture by the Artist V. S. Svarov ‘K. Voroshilov and M. Gorkii at the Shooting Range.’ 1933.

220. P. P. Smukrovich. Meeting of the Staff of the Red Guards. 1935.

221. V. Zhidelev. ‘Truth in the Trenches,’ April-June 1917. 1939.

222. N. B. Terpsikhorov. A Merry Farewell. 1937.

223. V. M. Izmailovich. A Russian Fortress Town of the 14th to 16th Centuries. 1936.

224. M. I. Avilov. The Eleven Border Guards at Zaozernaya Hill, August 1938. 1939-1940.

225. M. I. Avilov. The House Fell Silent Forever. 1940.

226. I. A. Vladimirov. Finns Surrendering.  1940.

227. I. V. Vladimirov. Destruction of a German Punitive Column in 1942. 1942.

228. V. Ye. Pamfilov. Construction of a Defensive Line. 1942.

229. G. P. Tatarnikov. Leningrad during the Winter Blockade. 1942.

230. A. A. Blinkov. The Taking of Vyborg by Soviet Troops, 12 March 1940. 1941.

231. B. V. Shcherbakov. Mine Clearers at Work. 1943.

232. V. Ye. Pamfilov. Battle on the Defensive Line. 1943.

233. V. Ye. Pamfilov. Liberated Land in the Smolensk Region. 1943.

234. V. Ye. Pamfilov. Artillery at Demyansk, 1943. 1944.

235. Unknown artist. The 25th Guards Engineer-Sapper Battalion Forcing the Vistula River near Kemik-Khotesk, 31 July 1944. 1944.

236. B. V. Shcherbakov. Forcing the Gzhat River, 11-12 August 1942. 1944.

237. A. M. Gritsai. Bridge Across the Sivash. 1944.

238. G. K. Savitskii. Crossing at Stalingrad. 1944.

239. A. M. Galerkin. A Brigade on the Oder. 1945.

240. Korovin. On a Military Road. 1945.

241. L. I. Naroditskii. Soviet Troops Storming the Parliament Building in Vienna, 13 April 1945. 1945.

242. Yu. N. Truze. Soviet Artillery Crossing the Dnieper River, 1943. 1944.

243. Chernoknizhnyi. The Deed of Junior Technical Lieutenant S. I. Yermolaev, 11 January 1945. 1945.

244. P. A. Krivonogov. Horse Artillery in Battle, 1944. 1946.

245. P. A. Krivonogov. On the Streets of Berlin, 1945. Study made from life,1945.

246. P. A. Krivonogov. On the Streets of Berlin, 1945. Study made from life,1945.

247. P. A. Krivonogov. The Reichstag. Study made from life,1945.

248. P. A. Krivonogov. 2 May 1945 at the Reichstag. Study made from life,1945.

249. Unknown artist. The Ladoga Ice Road. 1945.

250. Unknown artist. Supplying Ammunition in Stalingrad, 1942. 1945.

251. I. I. Poida. The People of Yugoslavia Greet Soviet Artillerymen, October 1944. 1945.

252. I. I. Poida. Breakthrough of Cavalry with Artillery near Simferopol, 19 November 1942. 1945.

253. P. S. Koretskii. Artillery Advancing on the Oder, 1945. 1946.

254. Peri. Complete Victory at Yassy-Kishinev. 1945.

255. V. Ye. Pamfilov. The Grave of Colonel Makartsev, 1942. 1946.

256. P. P. Sokolov-Skalya. Artillery at Stalingrad, 19 November 1942. 1946.

257. V. N. Yakovlev. Meeting of the Military Council for Artillery during the Great Patriotic War of 1941-1945. 1946.

258. A. A. Blinkov. Salvo by Rocket Launchers. 1947.

259. I. V. Vladimirov. Self-Propelled Artillery on the Streets of Berlin, 1945. 1946.

260. M. N. Domashchenko. Fighting at Sapun-Gora. 1947.

261. R. R. Frents. Artillery in the Demyansk Swamps, 1943. 1947.

262. I. I. Kudryavtsev. Guardsmen Taking an Oath on a Standard. 1947.

263. G. I. Marchenko. Anti-Aircraft Artillery at the Defense of Stalingrad. 1947.

264. N. I. Obryn’ba. Artillery in Street Fighting during the Assault on Berlin, 1945. 1947.

265. F. N. Sachko. Soviet Troops Taking Königsberg Fortress and the Capital of East Prussia, 9 April 1945. 1947.

266. G. A. Savinov. The Defense of the Pulkovsk Heights, September 1941. 1947.

267. F. P. Usypenko. Destruction of the Japanese Khailarsk Fortified Region, August 1945. 1947.

268. I. V. Yevstigneev. Crossing the Danube River at Budapest. 1948.

269. M. I. Samsonov. Tanks on the March. 1951.

270. M. I. Samsonov. Scouts, 1943. 1950.

271. V. M. Oreshnikov and A. A. Myl’nikov. M. V. Frunze Receiving Weapons Makers, 1924. 1948.

272. V. V. Iskam. The Deed of Captain Rodinov, 13 January 1943. 1954.

273. L. N. Il’tsen. Defense of the Moscow Kremlin from Khan Tokhmamysh, 23 October 1382. 1955.

274. V. S. Bodrov. The Siege of Kazan in 1552. 1956.

275. P. P. Litvinskii. Yevpatii Kolovrat, 1237. 1955. The work for which the author was awarded his diploma.

276. L. Ya. Rubinstein. The Taking of Vyborg, 1710. 1955.

277. F. P. Usypenko. The Storming of Izmail, 1790. 1957.

278. V. A Nechaev. The Deed of the Russian Gunners at Venden, 1578.  1958.

279. A. N. Semenov and A. S. Sokolov. Artillery at the Battle of Poltava, 1709. 1959.

280. V. A. Nikiforov. Andrei Chokhov with Students, 1605. 1955.

281. V. A. Nechaev. Soviet Artillery Crossing the Greater Khingan Range in August 1945. 1959.

282. F. P. Usypenko. Night Battle. Maneuvers. 1957. 1958.

283. N. F. Lebedev. A Witness of the Second World War. 1975.

284. Filippov and Zvyagintsev. Tank Column Making a River Crossing during Maneuvers. 1986.

285. N. N. Solomin. Next to Glory. 1987.


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Translated by Mark Conrad, 2007.