Rus News Journal

Writer Alexander Genis: Ivan Shishkin is Indiana Johns on a way to Elabugu .

Writer Alexander Genis lived and studied as the philologist in Riga. Simultaneously it ministered to firemen because early married and saw the   a debt in   family maintenance. At that time it - inconceivable business for the Soviet person!   - wore the hair long. That is, looking at it typical the philologist - the fireman 70 - h, at once it became clear that it becomes the writer.

Today Alexander Genis lives in America, has the rich personal and creative biography. Certainly, he was on friendly terms with Sergey Dovlatov, certainly — with Joseph Brodsky. About the first he has written the novel « Dovlatov and vicinities ». About the second — a number of sketches and an essay. As Ilf with Petrov, Genis of 13 years soavtorstvoval with Peter Vail. They have let out   two books on stories of two outstanding phenomena - « Russian cuisine in exile » and « Native speech or lessons of graceful literature ».    

One of these days there was Genis`s new book - « Candy wrappers ». It is the collection of stories about the most well-known products of Russian painting which any of us knows since the childhood so well that without effort will restore on memory. « morning in pine wood » Shishkin, « Christophany to the people » Ivanov, « the Highest wave » Ayvazovsky and a little others. Reproductions of these cloths can be met and in rural club, and in an office of any governor. But a leah much we know about these pictures? A leah many of us distinctly understand that in each case « the artist » wanted to tell;?

Ivan Shishkin: Morning in pine wood

Unlike other books on art, this not thick also is typed by large print. That everyone who was hardly learnt to spell, could meet lacks in the common cultural erudition. And at the same time and to take pleasure in flashing literary charm which, undoubtedly, Alexander Genis`s books possess.
with the permission of the author and publishing house « CORPUS » we publish one chapter from the book — about a picture which really became a candy wrapper.  


From all plots for embroidery by a dagger by the greatest popularity uses Akmeist of wood “ Morning in pine wood ” — a picture which the rumour has crossed in “ Three bears ” with the same artistic disregard to numerals with what Duma named the novel about four friends “ Three musketeers ”.

As knows everyone who tried, the embroidery demands not only selfless love to the original, but also a zen - Buddhist persistence. As meditation does not happen trite, all these national gobelins possess extraart value. They minister the condenser of vital energy which fans the fan - shuj call “ tsi ” and the others — as it is necessary.

Usually on a panel a mouline thread leaves four months, with “ Bears ” — Even it is more, but it still has stopped nobody, because bears demand victims.

the Shishkinsky picture so has deeply eaten in a nation skin that became its birthmark. However to comprehend secret of this canvas it is possible only when we for a while will separate wood from bears. To make it the easier that beasts have come on the ready. Shishkin has invited them to a cloth, expecting to recover not so much, how much to neutralise the brutal landscape.  

to People here and really not a place — in its picture for them simply is not present. Wood begins, as poems of the Homere: in medias res (from the business middle — red.) . Dropping out from a wall on the spectator, the landscape does not leave to it the point of view. Such, cut off from above a frame, we would see wood, looking at it through an embrasure dzota.

At bottom edge the situation is worse. Come across border of illusion with a reality the earth, without having sustained a pressure, vzdyblivaetsja, overturning old — imperial — a pine.

the Bared roots torn out with meat, the trunk broken in a belt, a brown faded crone — a gloomy scene of wood accident.

Its witnesses — other pines — make a stage setting surprising with expressiveness of a pose and gesture. One have started back, as if in horror, another, in the centre, on the contrary, was dumbfounded from the happened. That behind, last from a fog to receive particulars. Everyone is not similar to others, and on herself - that — not so. Individuality of a tree is seized with that almost sharzhirovannoj a sharpness which allows it to name or at least a nickname.

Pines, of course, merit that. I too love and I understand them more than others because under them has grown — on the Riga beach, porosshem the same, as in Shishkin`s picture, Baltic, medno pines reddening in the poor sun. Local counted them in   relatives. To the highest pines the mutilation has helped to escape. In World War I their years the artillery shot. Filled with lead of two armies wood already on what did not suit, and pines have left alone even then when collective farms here have come. Having survived, coniferous invalids have outgrown young, having saved the bearing decorated with tests that gives character to characters of tragedy and heroes of a landscape.
“ I, as a pine, — Venichka Yerofeev, &mdash spoke; never I look downwards ”.

Even friends named Shishkin`s style legal to that he only rejoiced, including itself(himself) the realist. To nature, however, Shishkin took fidelity literally. It included everyone, on its favourite expression, a nature whim — improbable, fantastic, improbable. Actually, any reality also consists of them. Any collective concept, whether it be wood or crowd, — the fiction of lazy mind facilitating work of the demagogue and the artist. But Shishkin did not see behind wood trees. He wrote them on a piece of infections, such with what they grew, without mixing up with neighbours in a pine pine forest which and is allocated with that that allows to be developed to everyone.

  Having gone for the first time behind mushrooms in America, I have been dumbfounded by its impassable woods. Trees are weaved by lianas and do not allow to pass without machete. Only whence at me machete? But when with despair I have gone to Canada has got to tundra where again cannot step the step, without having failed knee-deep.

So I have estimated magic worthiness of a pure pine forest into which it is easy to enter, but it is difficult to leave. Especially in native to Shishkin elabuzhskih woods, where as the young artist wrote, “ votjaki celebrated the ceremonials in sacred keremete for which chose the most deaf and picturesque places ”.

Such kapishchem could become and the scene represented by Shishkin with the tumbled down pine. A growing tree — the nature, broken — an architecture rudiment. Whatever spoke Markets, the nature — not a workshop, and   a temple, and the person in it the visitor, and a bear — the owner.

If each pine at Shishkin — a portrait drawn by Savitsky susalnye bears indeed remind the sweets with the same name. Shaggy small animals behave in wood, as if in circus. For completeness of impression bear cubs do not have not enough only bicycles.
meanwhile as to me familiar trainers told, a bear — last creature to whom trust on arena. Therefore only they also act in muzzles. Even small black bears who are found nearby to New York much, represent serious danger to people and deadly — for children. To what incident on a Chassidic resort where not skilled bear has pulled out from a carriage of the baby smelling as milk bears. Even more terribly, of course, the grizzly, capable to overtake and kill a horse. However, these bears are not able to swarm up trees, but from it it is not easier, wherefore grizzlies live there where there are no trees.

        Our, brown, the bear in wood occupies intermediate, and in mythology   priority position. The pioneer Darvinism to which learnt us puppet theatre, assured that the person has occurred from a monkey, the Yankee — from sharks, Russian — from bears. Adults with it also did not argue, including a family tree of the flatter.  

the Bear — after all too the tsar of beasts, but — national, as Pugachev and Yeltsin. Unlike a heraldic lion, it — the. On a patronymic — Ivanovich, temperament — from Dostoevsky: associates with gipsies, on a feast can dance.  
the main thing in a bear — powerful game of the force, which itself does not know to itself the price and a limit. It does its irresistible in anger and dangerous in love:

      we if your skeleton
  will crackle Are guilty l;                 In heavy, gentle our paws?

      however, on a candy wrapper others frolic — animated — bears. They have come here to transform an empty hall into a wood interior — peace, cosy, unsuitable for people, which to Shishkin as today`s green, seemed superfluous.

      Having got abroad, Shishkin in Berlin has praised chestnuts, in Dresden — declines, in Prague — the river, and in Munich on a broader scale has fought, having interceded in beer for fatherland and having broken about the offender shkvoren.

      In Europe Shishkin did not like past carrion. But the nature, it has brought in a diary, is always new, if “ it is not soiled by mankind exploits ”. Shishkin considered as a true art only   the landscape released from a plot. But unlike the impressionists who have confirmed correctness of this thesis, it so diligently eliminated from the pictures all human that has excluded from them and own sight at things. Trusting the nature more than to itself, Shishkin considered that it does not need subjective appraisal, and wrote so as if it was not.  

      the Best etchings at Shishkin are called as verses akmeistov:   “ the Bark on a dry trunk ” “ the Rotten tree covered with a moss ”. But even more I like he, especially on a portrait Kramsky. Strong, high, in fine boots without a pulling down, Shishkin is similar on the adventurer, the trailblazer, the traveller: Indiana Johns on the way to Elabugu.