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Vereshchagin’s work would be incomplete if he did not have a series of Balkan works.
It includes the picture "Before the attack. Under Plevna, which dates from 1881. It is an illustration of the attack of Russian soldiers on Turkish.
The audience is presented with a whole line of fighters, which is located diagonally. There seems to be no end to her limit. These are soldiers whose caps, guns and boots form a unity that is ready to go into battle. And after the battle, this unity will fall apart into white and red spots that will heal the wounds received. In the distance you can see the smoke coming from one of the attacks.
On the left side are officers who are deprived of the main role on this canvas. The main characters here are the soldiers, many of whom expect the same thing that happened with the trees torn to pieces on the canvas.
In the picture “Before the attack. Under Plevna, the artist wanted to show the grandeur of what was happening. It is this picture that will get ahead of cinematic films on military subjects. Thanks to the panoramic solution of this picture, the artist managed to achieve the expressiveness of the image, which the audience noted.
It was not easy for Vasily Vereshchagin to create this canvas. He repeatedly tried to tear it up or burn it. The artist worked all day over the painting. He literally slept with brushes and at the time of creating the canvas deprived himself of communication with his comrades.
The picture was not praised by the colleagues of the master. They felt that the artist’s letter was too generalized, and the color lacked integrity.