Gagarin, Grigorii Grigor’evich
Born Apr. 29 (May 11), 1810, in St. Petersburg; died Jan. 30, 1893, in Châtellerault, France. Russian painter, graphic artist, and art scholar.
Gagarin, who studied with K. P. Briullov, was vice president of the St. Petersburg Academy of Arts from 1859 to 1872. His many battle paintings are noted for their spontaneous perception of the military scenes and for a lack of an officially sponsored point of view. Gagarin’s graphic portraits, executed for the most part in an elegant contour manner, are marked by refined color relationships as well as a spiritual quality of the images (M. K. Orbeliani, D. A. Chavchavadze—both pencil drawings, early 1840’s, Russian Museum, Leningrad). Gagarin was the creator of the genre illustrations permeated with the spirit of satire for V. A. Sollogub’s Tarantas (published in the engravings of E. E. Bernardskii in 1845). These belong to the most important works of democratic Russian book illustrating of the 1830’s and 1840’s. Gagarin also created a number of ethnologic sketches. A number of cathedrals were built in the Byzantine style in Caucasian cities according to his designs.