Ivan Aivazovsky

Ivan Aivazovsky | biography and paintings (1817 – 1900)

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Ivan Aivazovsky

Ivan Aivazovsky

Russian-Armenian Romantic painter Ivan Aivazovsky was born in Feodosia (1817). Aivazovsky’s childhood was spent in poverty on the outskirts of the city facing the beautiful Feodosia Bay and the ruins of an ancient Greek fortress. Young Ivan was mesmerized by the grandeur of the view and the heroic stories told about the Greeks and the famous battles of the past. His talent was discovered at a very early age. He was taken on as an apprentice by a local architect and later sent to a gymnasium in Simferopol where he showed such amazing artistic skills that influential locals helped him move to St. Petersburg to enter the Academy of Art.

Aivazovsky traveled to Europe and lived briefly in Italy. He first traveled to Venice via Berlin and Vienna and visited San Lazzaro degli Armeni, where an important Armenian Catholic congregation was located and his brother Gabriel lived at the time. Aivazovsky studied Armenian manuscripts and became familiar with Armenian art. He met Russian novelist Nikolai Gogol in Venice. He then headed to Florence, Amalfi and Sorrento. In Florence, he met painter Alexander Ivanov. He remained in Naples and Rome between 1840 and 1842.

returned to Russia

When he returned to Russia in the early 1940s, he was appointed the official painter of the Russian navy and made an academician of the St. Petersburg Academy of Arts. Aivazovsky was made an academician of the Imperial Academy of Arts and was appointed the “official artist of the Russian Navy to paint seascapes, coastal scenes and naval battles. In 1845, Aivazovsky traveled to the Aegean Sea with Duke Konstantin Nikolayevich and visited the Ottoman capital, Constantinople, and the Greek islands of Patmos and Rhodes.

In 1845, Aivazovsky settled in his hometown of Feodosia, where he built a house and studio. He isolated himself from the outside world, keeping a small circle of friends and relatives. Yet the solitude played a negative role in his art career. By the mid-nineteenth century, Russian art was moving from Romanticism towards a distinct Russian style of Realism, while Aivazovsky continued to paint Romantic seascapes and attracted heavy criticism.

Over the course of his 60-year career, he produced approximately 6,000 paintings and held 55 solo exhibitions in Europe and the United States. The phrase “worthy of Aivazovsky’s brush” was coined by the writer Anton Chekhov in his 1897 play Uncle Vanya, solidifying the artist’s lasting importance to the history of Russian art. Aivazovsky’s house in Feodosia was opened as the Aivazovsky National Art Gallery in 1800, where it remains a tourist attraction. He died on May 2, 1900 in Feodosia, Russia.

Ivan Aivazovsky paintings

ivan aivazovsky a mill on the beach

a mill on the beach

ivan aivazovsky among the waves

among the waves

ivan aivazovsky at the beach

at the beach

ivan aivazovsky battle of cesme at night

battle of Chesme at night

ivan aivazovsky bayron visit to san lazarro

Bayron visit to San Lazarro

ivan aivazovsky calm sea

Calm Sea

ivan aivazovsky blue waves

blue waves

ivan aivazovsky darial george mountains

Darial George Mountains

ivan aivazovsky gondola at venice

gondola at Venice

ivan aivazovsky mount of ararat

Mount of Ararat

ivan aivazovsky mountain village gunib in Daghestan

mountain village gunib in Daghestan

ivan aivazovsky on the beach

on the beach

ivan aivazovsky on the island of crete

on the island of Crete

ivan aivazovsky sail ship at the open sea

sail ship at the open sea

ivan aivazovsky sea 1864

sea 1864

ivan aivazovsky sea

sea

ivan aivazovsky steamship

steamship

ivan aivazovsky storm at sea

storm at sea

ivan aivazovsky the american ships at the rock of gibraltar

the american ships at the rock of Gibraltar

ivan aivazovsky the coast at amalfi

the coast at Amalfi

ivan aivazovsky the shipwreck near mountain of aphon

the shipwreck near mountain of Aphon

ivan aivazovsky the shipwreck on northern sea

the shipwreck on northern sea

ivan aivazovsky towers on a rock near the Bosphorus

towers on a rock near the Bosphorus

ivan aivazovsky view of capri mediterranean

view of Capri, Mediterranean

ivan aivazovsky view of constantinople by moonlight

view of Constantinople by moonlight

ivan aivazovsky view of odessa by moonlight

view of Odessa by moonlight

ivan aivazovsky view of the sea from the mountains at sunset

view of the sea from the mountains at sunset

ivan aivazovsky view on the capri

view on the Capri

ivan aivazovsky before the storm feodosia

before the storm Feodosia

ivan aivazovsky black sea

Black Sea

ivan aivazovsky cataclysm and covenant

cataclysm and covenant

ivan aivazovsky clouds over the sea wind

clouds over the sea wind

ivan aivazovsky deadly sea

deadly sea

ivan aivazovsky fishermen on the seashore

fishermen on the seashore

ivan aivazovsky look from st petersburg shore

look from St Petersburg shore

ivan aivazovsky lunar night

lunar night

ivan aivazovsky marine view with the moon

marine view with the moon

ivan aivazovsky mercury

mercury

ivan aivazovsky morning in the bay of naples

morning in the bay of Naples

ivan aivazovsky niagara falls

Niagara Falls

ivan aivazovsky ninth wave

ninth wave

ivan aivazovsky ships in the stormy sea sunrise

ships in the stormy sea sunrise

ivan aivazovsky shipwreck

shipwreck

ivan aivazovsky storm at the seashore by nice

storm at the seashore by Nice

ivan aivazovsky storm

storm

ivan aivazovsky the caucasian range from the sea

the Caucasian range from the sea

ivan aivazovsky the coast of crimea

the coast of Crimea

ivan aivazovsky the evening at the maggiore lake

evening at the Maggiore Lake

ivan aivazovsky the mary caught in a storm

the Mary caught in a storm

ivan aivazovsky the sea at koktebel

the sea at Koktebel

ivan aivazovsky the sea shore at night

the sea shore at night

ivan aivazovsky the shipwreck at the tempest

the shipwreck at the tempest

ivan aivazovsky the sunrise in feodosia

the sunrise in Feodosia

ivan aivazovsky view of odessa

view of Odessa

ivan aivazovsky view of tbilisi

view of Tbilisi

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