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In the early 1860s, Vasily Perov went to Paris. In 1865, during his stay in the capital of France, he began creating a series of paintings that reveal the themes of the poor and loneliness. Among them is a real masterpiece of the artist "Orphans in the cemetery" of 1864.
This small-sized painting contains important topics for the rest of the artist's work: death, grief and children's tears. The picture contains small children who stand alone next to a snowy grave. Vasily Perov skillfully conveys the emotionally expressive component of the picture.
The artist set himself the goal of depicting not only specific people. But to show the audience a childhood doomed to eternal starvation and wandering. This is emphasized by miserable clothes, bare feet, large and desperate children's eyes. Their appearance symbolizes tragedy, despair and hopelessness.
Perov skillfully portrayed the landscape that surrounds the children. The snowy sky looks heavy, the snow has gray-blue hues, and in the background you can see rickety crosses. The work is not without symbolic meaning. On a gravestone, next to which the children stand, a branch was ground, which is strange in winter. Here it symbolizes the victory of life over death. It is possible that the branch was brought by the children to the grave as the only decoration.
A boy and a girl stand as if they form a sculptural unity. Thanks to the artist’s skill, his tenacious gaze and emotions, the viewer experiences sincere sympathy, pity for the children and a desire to help them.
Metamorphoses of Narcissus