Description of the picture:
Wanderer – Perov. 1870. Oil on canvas. 88×54
Wanderer in Russia – the embodiment of biblical "beggars"by whom promised "the Kingdom of heaven". People of this breed have always been treated with respect, some even fear. After the reform of 1861, there were a lot of such wanderers. Among them were those who chose complete freedom, even with absolute poverty.
An old man in old patched clothes and bast shoes looks from the picture. He has a staff in his hands, and a duffel bag with all his belongings behind him.
It is immediately evident that the loose gray beard is well-groomed, the hair is neatly combed. Clothing, albeit well-worn, but clean. The hero’s gaze is full of dignity, wisdom and hopeless sadness. And his posture speaks of independence and self-confidence, no matter what. The artist paid special attention to the hands of his hero.
Behind the hero’s shoulders is a long and difficult life that did not bring him happiness, prosperity, joy. But the desire to enjoy freedom and to be dependent only on oneself overpowered all the temptations of the material order.
The artist chooses a dark, neutral background, allowing the viewer to фокус on the figure of the hero, his amazing look.
It is known that the master painted a portrait from an old man in whose life he wanted to take part, arrange him in a shelter. The master was amazed when a wanderer, offended by one of the owners of the shelter, refused to settle in it and chose to continue to eke out a difficult existence and interrupt by casual earnings."