Tea drinking in Mytishchi, near Moscow - Perov. 43.5x47.3
In a work full of details, nuances and trifles, there is nothing accidental. It was Mytishchi water that was considered the most delicious, and tea drinking in this place near Moscow was very popular.
Before the viewer appears the usual, trivial summer scene near Moscow. The monk, in our case, probably the abbot, is drinking tea in the shade of a garden near Moscow. A pair of beggars suddenly appeared in front of him: an old blind disabled soldier and a guide boy. The maid, worried about the appearance of beggars, is trying to drive them away. The main character pretends that what is happening does not apply to him at all.
The Order on the worn soldier’s overcoat, the ragged shirt of the boy, the red glossy face of the monk, the hasty and bustling figure of the novice novice in the background, the open bag of the important guest, ready to accept the presents, and much more can tell a lot.
The picture is clearly satirical, although it was painted by order of the Mytishchi city council. However, the customer did not accept such frankly anticlerical work.
The work is designed in inexpressive colors. Here Perov refuses a rich palette. Gray-greenish tones are designed to show the usualness of the situation, its vitality. An interesting composition of the picture. The master draws the attention of the viewer to the opposed elements: the satiety of a monk and the exhaustion of a disabled person, the mirror cleanliness of expensive boots and a tattered shirt. Finally, a hand stretched out after alms turns out to be stretched out into the void.
Condemning the hypocrisy, gluttony, spiritual emptiness of churchmen, the author is entirely on the side of the unfortunate and offended. In this work, the artist was able to perfectly convey the atmosphere of awkwardness that arose in this situation. It can be clearly seen that the servant serving the guest tries to look away, is awkward and simply ashamed.
Compositionally, the artist creates a kind of folk lubok, the composition is written off in a circle formed by the trees of the garden. From the perspectives of the figures, in the manner of writing, there is a sense of the author’s evil irony, sarcasm and satire. It is no coincidence that during this creative period the author had many troubles associated with the reaction of the Holy Synod to a number of works of an anticlerical focus. But the progressively-minded public so unitedly defended the artist that the claims of the Church ceased.