Apollinarii Mikhailovich Vasnetsov

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Vasnetsov, Apollinarii Mikhailovich


Born July 25 (Aug. 6), 1856, in the village of Riabovo, in present-day Kirov Oblast; died on Jan. 23, 1933, in Moscow. Russian painter and graphic artist.

Vasnetsov studied with his brother V. M. Vasnetsov, with V. D. Polenov, and with I. E. Repin. Beginning in 1888 he was one of the peredvizhniki (the “wanderers,” a progressive art movement), and as of 1903 he was one of the organizers of the Alliance of Russian Artists. In 1900 he became a member of the St. Petersburg Academy of Art. He painted epic landscapes (Homeland, 1886; Taiga in the Urals: Blue Mountain, 1891; Kama, 1895—all in the Tret’iakov Gallery). In the 1890’s he began painting historical landscapes and produced a large number of architectural landscapes of old Moscow, combining archaeological accuracy with a very poetic mood (Street in Kitai-gorod: Beginning of the 17th century, 1900, Russian Museum; Red Square in the Second Half of the 17th Century, 1925, Museum of History and Reconstruction of Moscow). He produced sketches for theatrical productions (Khovanshchina by Mussorgsky, 1897, in the Moscow private Russian opera of S. I. Mamontov; The Legend of the Invisible Town of Kitezh by Rimsky-Korsakov, 1907, in the Mariinskii Theater). From 1901 to 1918 he taught landscape painting at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture, and Architecture. Beginning in 1918 he headed the Commission for the Study of Old Moscow and conducted archaeological research at the excavations in the central part of the city. In Moscow there is a memorial apartment-museum for Vasnetsov.


Khudozhestvo: Opyt analiza poniatii, opredeliaiushchikh isskusstvo zhivopisi. Moscow, 1908.
“Oblik staroi Moskvy.” In I. Grabar [and others], Istoriia russkogo isskustva, vol. 2. Moscow [1910-11]. Chapter 14, pp. 225-50.


Bespalova, L. A. M. Vasnetsov: 1856-1933. Moscow, 1956.
A. Vasnetsov: K stoletiiu so dnia rozhdeniia. Moscow, 1957.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.