Colorful Life (1907)  by Wassily Kandinsky

Colorful Life



Tempera on canvas

51.2 × 64" (130.0 × 162.5 cm)

Munich, The St?dtische Galerie im Lenbachhaus

“The challenge that fascinated me above all was creating a mixture of masses, stains and lines. I used a “bird’s eye view” to position shapes above each other. In order to organize particular areas and brushstrokes the way I wanted, I had to find substantiation in terms of perspective in each case…” Kandinsky

Since Kandinsky’s ethnographic work in Vologodskaya province he absorbed the world of a Russian backwoods with its life full of all sorts of colors. He went there solely with scientific objectives, but he already perceived everything as a painter: people “were dressed in bright and colorful clothes, so they looked like two-legged moving pictures”.

In his early career Kandinsky was quite close to the theme of Russian epos and Russia in general. The paintings “Russian Knight”, “Russian beauty in landscape”, “Golden sail”, “A Russian Scene”, “Pareja a caballo”, “Volga song”, “Les Corbeaux” indicate the painter’s strong Russian roots. But even then we see the way to discover something entirely new in his experiments.

In 1914 during the Cologne lecture he said: “In “Colorful life” where I was carried away by the task to create the masses, spots and lines mixture, I used the bird’s eye panorama view to place the figures one behind the other. In order to settle zones boundaries and allocate the strokes as I wanted, I had to find a perspective excuses or pretexts for any particular case”.

The picture “Colorful life” made in bright and bold colors in pointillism technique is filled with personages in plenty, many of which we will independently see in further painter’s works: a headlong riding knight with a sword, a coupe in love paying attention to nothing, rowers cleaving the dark water with oars, an archer ready to set his arrow, a gloomy funeral and so on. Also as on the picture “Pareja a caballo” written a year earlier, there is a river serving as a barrier and a splendid town standing behind it as a symbol of future, something alluring and wonderful which needs to be reached. Color and thematic saturation of the painting is this colorfulness of life itself, on the threshold of which the painter was standing.

More from 1907


01 June 2015
admin: scroll thru?

what you mean?
31 May 2015
Sharon Saunders from San Francisco : Why can't I scroll thru these images?
16 December 2014
Deborah from U.S.A.: His works look to me like the Nature of sub-atomic particles harnessed into visually palatable/subliminally understood WONDER.
16 December 2014
Haq Nawaz Jamali from Pakistan: Superb art pictures. looks very beautiful. and origin .

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