Kramskoy Ivan Nikolaevich (years of life - 1837-1887) is known to us today as a talented portrait painter and historical painter. He was fond of painting from childhood. At every opportunity, he picked up a pen or pencil and tried to sketch everything that he saw around him. Loved to read.
In 1850, after graduating from the county school, the 13-year-old Vanya had already begun his career. At first he worked as a scribe, and later as a retoucher with a friend of the photographer, with whom they traveled almost the whole of Russia. In 1857, they arrived in St. Petersburg, where the future artist decided to stay, having hired a job at the A.I. Dener photo studio. In the same year, Ivan Kramskoy realized his dream - he entered the Academy of Arts.
Even during his studies, the artist tried to unite all active academic youth around him. And having completed his studies, together with other graduates of the Academy, he created the St. Petersburg artel. They say that the atmosphere of friendliness and mutual understanding that prevailed there is completely his merit.
By that time, Ivan Kramskoy had finally found his calling as a portrait painter. His favorite technique at that time was graphic. It is her that we can observe today in the portraits of I.I. Shishkin, I. Morozov, G. G. Myasoedov, N.A. Kosheleva and not only.
For some time, Kramskoy taught at the School of Arts at the Society for the Promotion of Artists. When the St. Petersburg artel slowly began to disintegrate, he became the organizer of the association of traveling art exhibitions.
70-80 years of the XIX century began for Ivan Kramskoy the period when some of his most famous works were written (Polesovschik, Mina Moiseev, Peasant with a bridle). Increasingly, the artist united in his works portrait and everyday themes (Stranger, inconsolable grief).
Throughout his career, the artist often had to take orders of a church nature, which were for him one of the main sources of income.
Thus, it is no exaggeration to say that Ivan Kramskoy was an outstanding figure in the cultural life of Russia in the 60-80s. the century before last. A talented artist, subtle critic, founder of the St. Petersburg artel, he became the ideological inspirer of a whole generation who set a new vector for the development of such a branch of art in Russia as portrait realism.