The canvases of Ivan Aivazovsky are hanging in the White House – against their backdrop, US President John F. Kennedy once gave a press conference. President Kennedy was not alone in his passion for this artist – today, 2 of the 30 paintings by Aivazovsky which used to be in the Dolmabahçe Palace collection in Istanbul now adorn the residence of Erdogan, the state and political leader of the Republic of Turkey.
Given the Armenian origin of Ivan Aivazovsky, the choice of his paintings as a background for interstate meetings looks at least mysterious.
Actor Alexander Mikhailov admits – Aivazovsky abruptly changed his fate. After Mikhailov as a boy saw Aivazovsky’s “The Ninth Wave” for the first time, he began to rave about the sea, ran away from his remote Siberian village twice to become a sailor, and then persuaded his mother to move to Vladivostok.
Cosmonaut Alexei Leonov in childhood gave his monthly ration of bread for a book with illustrations of Aivazovsky. The paintings of this artist also occupied an honorable place in the collections of famous Russian collectors, including cellist and conductor Mstislav Rostropovich and singer Lidia Ruslanova.
However, in our country, no one needs to prove that Ivan Aivazovsky is a great Russian artist. Each of us knows this from the third grade when we had first seen the reproduction of his “The Ninth Wave” in textbooks.
But the authority of Ivan Konstantinovich is unusually high abroad as well – at world auctions, there were cases when Aivazovsky’s paintings were sold for more than Rembrandt’s! Paintings of the still beginner 20-year-old marine painter were bought by kings and cardinals in Europe, and the Pope also wanted to have his canvas.
What does a person feel at a glance at the sea landscapes of Ivan Aivazovsky? Why does one feel a strange excitement, a desire to view them again and again? To answer these questions, you need to touch the secret of Ivan Aivazovsky, a man of extraordinary fate who has been afraid of poverty all his life but whose troubles and misfortunes mysteriously turned into fame and fortune every time…
Aivazovsky was idolized in his homeland of Crimea. Even the Crimean Tatar Robin Hood, the robber Alim Aydamak, did not rob, but, on the contrary, gifted the artist.
During Aivazovsky’s wedding, Aydamak on horseback approached Aivazovsky’s carriage and threw an expensive Turkish scarf onto his bride’s lap. And a few years before this, Theodosian architect Koch along with other “philanthropists” helped the talented boy enter the Academy of Arts at the government’s expense.
Ivan Aivazovsky, Part 1 | Virtual Museum Tour
Ivan Aivazovsky, Part 2 | Virtual Museum Tour
Ivan Aivazovsky: A collection of 729 paintings (HD) *UPDATE