After prolonged abstinence during a strictChristmas fast, after the noisy New Year's feasts and the bright joy of the Nativity of Christ, after the Epiphany holidays that followed him, the despondent Carnival begins. Having come to us through the centuries, it is now perceived not only as a tribute to ancient traditions, but also as an introduction to certain sacred actions.
Echoes of paganism
As soon as this amazing period is calledtime in late February - early March, on the verge of winter and spring, cheerful and hearty treats before the long Paschal fast of the Slavic peoples! And Cheese Week in the church calendar, and Blinnitsey-Obyeduha in the people! Warm winter fun, folk festivities, sleigh rides and fisticuffs, a solemn procession with a stuffed Shrovetide and burning it in honor of the wires that had already managed to bore the simple people of snows and frosts - all these colorful, emotional activities attracted the attention of many artists. Especially the vivid and vivid embodiment was reflected in the holiday in painting. Studying art canvases, we come across a rare phenomenon: different Russian artists have a picture of "Maslenitsa". Why they gave their work the same name, what is the difference between each - this is what we are talking about in this article.
History and traditions
In the pre-Christian period of life of the Eastern Slavs,the present Russian, Ukrainians and Byelorussians, the coming of the new year was connected with the spring equinox, the awakening of nature, the beginning of a new life cycle, the cult of fertility and the memory of ancestors. The farmers, who in their way of life, basically, were the ancient Slavs, fully depended on the harvests in their fields. The painting "Maslenitsa" by Semyon Shemyakin (2001) reflects one of the most important elements of the holiday - the burning of a straw effigy, the ashes scattered throughout all the peasant allotments. It was believed that in this way people increase the fertility of the land, stimulate its fertile beginning.
The second meaning of the rite
Another picture of Maslenitsa is anothercontemporary artist Anatoly Nikolaevich Shelyakin (2005) sharpens our attention on another semantic moment of the holiday. Creating a family and the birth of children, the continuation of the family - in this, according to the ancients, the main purpose of man. Therefore, on Maslenitsa various games were encouraged, during which the youth could express their feelings more freely. Traditions to honor boys and girls, young men and women, capable of giving offspring, are closely connected with the same cult of fertility and the revival of life. From here went the carnival bridegrooms of the newlyweds, and skating in the sleds of young people of both sexes, and even comic harassment of bachelors.
Relationship with your kin
And, finally, the picture "Maslenitsa" is also ourscontemporary - Anna Cherkashina (2002). It addresses the viewer to the third semantic aspect of the holiday - the remembrance of other ancestors who left the world, the forgiveness of offenses, which for a year members of the family, relatives and friends, neighbors either voluntarily or involuntarily inflicted on each other. Pancakes, as the main element of the Maslenitsa table in the Cherkashin's painting, particularly accurately reflect the ancient Slavic funeral essence of the feast.
Master of the genre
A whole series of paintings under the general name wrotea wonderful artist Boris Kustodiev. Maslenitsa is presented in different versions, but with the same degree of talent and exact transmission of a peculiar color of the festival. The cycle of works was created in a relatively short period of 4 years - from 1916 to 1920. 5 full-length paintings and 2 versions of the same picture, performed in different colors, emphasize the artist's special interest in the chosen topic. How does Kustodiev approach it? The "Pancake Day" of 1916 (one of the paintings of this time) is a typically Russian winter landscape. The sky is colored by the sunset and blazes with purple and gold. Its beams shine on snow-covered roofs and pavements, they light up the rainbow lights on the trees wrapped in shaggy fur coats. The domes and spiers of the churches, rushing to the heights of the heavens, rise. And in the streets people are gay and merry, the fair is noisy, not wanting to disperse, carousels are flickering, painted sleds are rushing. A wide Russian soul, a valiant daring and love of life - this is the emotional background of the picture. It charges with optimism and cheerfulness, excites the imagination of spectators and evokes a desire to study the life, history and traditions of its people. Of course, our description of the picture "Maslenitsa" is far from complete. But we hope that it will awaken the curiosity of the readers of the article, and they, too, will want to learn more about Russian antiquity and Russian art.
Instead of an afterword
As you can see, pictures of artists "Pancake week"diverse in genre and performance. Landscapes and still lifes, portrait sketches, stylization under the national splint in the works of masters of national painting not only reveal us some moments of culture, life and beliefs of ancestors, but also bring the past closer, making it understandable and native. Art, like a time machine, takes us from one era to another, not allowing us to lose touch with our roots and making us feel our blood ties with all of humanity.