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Gerasimov, Aleksandr Mikhailovich
Born July 31 (Aug. 12), 1881, in Kozlov (present-day Michurinsk), in Tambov Oblast; died July 23, 1963, in Moscow. Soviet painter, People’s Artist of the USSR (1943), member of the Academy of Art of the USSR (1947), doctor of the arts (1951). Joined the CPSU in 1950.
Gerasimov studied at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture (1903-15) with A. E. Arkhipov and K. A. Korovin. He lived in Kozlov from 1918 to 1925 and thereafter in Moscow. He became a member of the Association of Artists of Revolutionary Russia in 1925. Before the revolution he devoted himself mainly to landscape painting and during the Soviet period, to portraiture. In 1929-30, Gerasimov painted his best work, the portrait scene entitled Lenin on the Tribune, a work permeated with heroic enthusiasm (V. I. Lenin Central Museum in Moscow). He also painted a number of still lifes and genre pictures, and produced illustrations and graphic works. His works in the Tret’iakov Gallery are Troika: Winter Road (1912), After the Rain (1935), J. V. Stalin and K. E. Voroshilov in the Kremlin (1938; State Prize, 1941), a portrait of O. V. Lepeshinskaia (1939), a portrait of I. I. Fisanovich (1942), and a group portrait of four elder Soviet artists—I. N. Pavlov, V. N. Bakshaev, V. K. Bialynitskii-Birulia, and V. N. Meshkov (1944; State Prize, 1945). The Speech of J. V. Stalin at the Sixteenth Congress of the ACP (Bolshevik), done in 1933, hangs in the Archive of Art Works of the Ministry of Culture of the USSR, in Zagorsk; The Bath (1940) and Hymn to October (1942; State Prize, 1943) are in the Russian Museum in Leningrad. From 1939 to 1954, Gerasimov was chairman of the organizational committee of the Union of Soviet Artists and from 1947 to 1957, president of the USSR Academy of Art. He was awarded the Order of Lenin and two other orders, as well as medals.