The Knight at the Crossroads - Viktor Mikhailovich Vasnetsov. 167x299
Viktor Mikhailovich Vasnetsov, with a series of works devoted to the plots of Russian fairy tales and epics, turned out to be an innovator in this field of fine art. He gained a reputation as a “storyteller”, he was so inspired by the spirit of Russian antiquity and bygone time that he built his Moscow house in the form of a wooden hut (now there is a memorial museum of the painter).
The painting "The Knight at the Crossroads" partially reflects the fate of Vasnetsov. Being a recognized artist-wanderer, he, like his comrades, performed genre compositions in the spirit of acutely social themes that excited society in the 1870-1890s. But the fabulous theme that captured him dictated a different development of creativity. The painter avoided the problems of our time and plunged into the world of Russian antiquity, at the risk of being convicted.
The choice of the path as one of the fateful questions of human life on the master’s large-format canvas acquired an epic sound. In front of the fortune teller, a saddened knight bent under the weight of a fatal prophecy. The ominous raven, the setting red sun, intensifies the atmosphere. The artist deliberately abandoned the image of the road (as a way out of difficulty) in order to show the inevitability of fate.