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One of the most penetrating paintings of the genius of the Russian landscape has an inaccurate dating of creation: approximately 1885. Polenov depicted the Tiberias (Genisaret) lake more than once, the painter dedicated several paintings of the Gospel cycle to this place. He visited the area in Palestine when he first traveled to eastern countries. Voyage became decisive in the creative plan, determining the formation of a landscape painter.
When writing the canvas, Polenov applied his favorite composition when the near and far plans are compared. Each viewer thinks that he looks around the area from a low hill, and the expanses that open to his eyes are visible to the horizon, where gradually the brightening sky gently descends to a low mountain range.
The lake is written with great love and inner trepidation - of all the Russian landscape masters, only Polenov was able to masterfully combine realities and poetry in portraying the surrounding nature.
On the deserted lake shores it is quiet and deserted. Water lazily splashes along the rocky shore, bright light and warmth literally flow over the canvas. Vegetation is almost absent, breaking through stones. It becomes clear that very close is the desert that has already been overcome
Jesus Christ, and now slowly walks along the coast, resting on a staff. His gaze is fixed on the distance. Ahead is a long road full of trials and suspense.
This is one of Polenov’s most successful images of the Son of man. The painter with great trepidation belonged to the evangelical commandments, knew the texts from Christian literature well. The image of Jesus, the painter devoted several works, created a series of paintings depicting the presence of Christ among people.
In the painting "On Lake Tiberias", experts and art lovers unexpectedly saw a completely different Polenov - the master of the divine landscape.
Particularly impressive is the general background in the picture. Bright light colors create a feeling of wide airspace.
The canvas is in the collection of the Art Museum of Yaroslavl. However, in addition to the original, there are also variants of this canvas, as a result of Polenov's careful study of this famous landscape.
This work has preserved one sketch (it has been deposited at the Art Museum of Dnepropetrovsk), and two copies are in the Kursk Picture Gallery and the Museum of Russian Art in Kiev.