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Pan by Mikhail Vrubel - Painting Description

Pan by Mikhail Vrubel - Painting Description

Pan - Mikhail Vrubel. 1899. Oil on canvas. 124x106 cm

Among the paintings of the "fairytale cycle" this one has been given a palm by the researchers. The classic plot from ancient mythology, taken from the Anatole France's short story, "sounds" completely in the Russian manner. The master persistently draws the public's attention to this.

It is known that the master himself used to call his work "Satyr", and the name "Pan" resulted from the "creativity" of critics.

The viewer sees a mythical guardian of natural resources, a pagan goat-footed pan. The background of the painting depicts an impeccably Russian landscape with birches, a waning moon and a river passing through the thickets. Illuminated by the moonlight, the goat-legged hero looks more like a Russian fairy-tale goblin. The viewer can only clearly see the "human" hypostasis of the hero. The outlines of the animal origin are lost in the shadows. The viewer gets the feeling that he is present at the time of the hero's miraculous appearance in front of the eyes of mortals.

Large old hands having knobby fingers serve as a reminder of immortal life, wise, filled with a special meaning which is inaccessible to the uninitiated. It is impossible to tear yourself away from the gaze of the guardian of natural treasures. His gaze is bright, piercing and of unusual kindness. A smile is lost in his thick mustache.

Deliberate disproportionality of the body, violation of perspective - all this only emphasizes the fabulous plot of the picture, its deep meaning and idea.
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