KOLESNIKOV STEPAN FEDOROVICH

VIEW OF THE MÜNCH BROTHERS’ RTANJ MINE FROM THE HEAD OFFICE, SERBIA

KOLESNIKOFF STEPAN FEDOROVICH (1879 – 1955)

VIEW OF THE MÜNCH BROTHERS’ RTANJ MINE FROM THE HEAD OFFICE, SERBIA

Year 1927

Paper on cardboard, charcoal, watercolor, ink, pen, tempera

50 x 70 cm

Signed in Cyrillic and dated lower left: С.Колесников 1927 г.
Signed lower right: S. Kolesnikoff

 

PROVENANCE:
This artwork, created in 1927, was commissioned by Julius Münch (1873 – 1932), the owner of the Münch brothers’ mine, Rtanj. It depicts the view from the main office over the Rtanj mine, the building of which was destroyed during the World War II. The mine was opened by Samuel Münch, who came to Serbia in 1870 and founded the first modern textile factory in 1882 in Parachin before he launched coal mine in 1902 together with his two sons, Julius and Adolf. The job vacancies that opened thanks to the mine, contributed significantly to the development of the region. Houses, schools, a hospital, shops, a cinema have been built and even an orchestra of 25 musicians was founded. After Samuel’s death in 1919 his elder son Julius made efforts to increase the mining production; by 1923 he had 550 miners employed. Though the mine was closed in 1966, the Münchs are still remembered in Serbia as great philanthropists.
You can find the story about Rtanj Mine and Münch family on the web site:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-wW3HpZlAzI

 

EXPERTISE:
P. M. Tretyakov independent art research & expertise, expert conclusion ОГ 12207, № 7762-35, from 28 September 2019.

 

Unique theme that depicts a view through the window.
This composition combines everything that the painter loved to paint: horses, people, buildings, trees and mountains. Artist used his favorite palette of bright colors for this painting. The manner of painting is typical for the painter. The painting was created by S. F. Kolesnikov at the peak of his artistic career.
It has a special art value, as well as collector’s and museum value.

 

CONDITION REPORT:
The artwork is in perfect condition.

 

Price on request.

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KOLESNIKOV (KOLESNIKOFF) STEPAN FEDOROVICH
1879 (Adrianopol, Ekaterinoslav province) — 1955 (Belgrade)

Painter, graphic artist, scene-designer

Stepan Kolesnikov was born to a peasant family. He was brother of the painter I. F. Kolesnikov. In 1897–1903 he studied at Odessa Art School under the guidance of A. A. Popov. He also attended the Higher Art Institute of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture under the Imperial Academy of Arts in 1903–1909. He studied under L. D. Iorini, K. K. Kostandi, and G. A. Ladyzhensky. In 1905 Kolesnikov was awarded the second prize at the spring exhibition in the Imperial Academy of Arts for the painting Spring. In 1909 he conferred title of an artist for the painting “In old estate” and was sent to pensioner trip abroad.

In 1909–1911 Kolesnikov as a pensioner of Imperial Academy of Arts visited Germany, France, and Belgium. He also traveled to Capri, where he met Maxim Gorky. Kolesnikov traveled to the south of Russia; he worked in Bessarabia, Podolsk Carpathians, Balkans, Bulgaria, and Serbia. In 1913 he made a trip aboard a camel through Turkestan and China.

Kolesnikov lived in St. Petersburg. He painted landscapes, portraits, still lifes, genre scenes and battle-scene paintings. The most favorite theme of Kolesnikov’s works in 1910s was south Russian landscape with peoples and animals, scenes of Gypsy life. His works were published in the magazines Niva (“Field”), Ogonek (“Little Fire”) and others. He was also engaged in monumental painting.

Since 1904 Kolesnikov participated in different exhibitions. He exposed his works at the exhibitions of Moscow Society of Art Lovers (1904, 1905, 1908, 1912), the Spring exhibitions of the Imperial Academy of Arts (1905–1909), the Salon of V. A. Izdebsky (1909–1910), the exhibitions of the Society of artists (1912, 1915–1916), the exhibitions of the Society of Travelling Art Exhibitions (TPKhV, 1916–1917), the exhibitions of the Society of South Russian Artists (1918) and many others. Since 1910 Kolesnikov was a member of the group Obshchina Khudozhnikov (“Artist Community”). Several times he was awarded prize of the Society for the Encouragement of Arts (OPKh) in the contest named after A. I. Kuindzhi. In 1912 the first personal exhibition of Kolesnikov was held in halls of the OPKh in St. Petersburg.

In 1919 Kolesnikov immigrated to Belgrade. He taught drawing in the Russian–Serbian gymnasium (1920–1924). Kolesnikov worked as a scene-designer in the People’s Theatre (1921–1926); there he painted plafond of hall (1922). He decorated interiors of the Palace-Hotel (1923), and boardroom of the State Bank. Personal exhibitions of Kolesnikov were held in Belgrade (1921, 1926), in Prague (1926), in Paris (1927) and in Brussels (1928).

Till 1930s works of Kolesnikov were also exposed at the exhibitions in Soviet Russia: the First Kozmodemyansk exhibition of painting, sketches and drawings (1920), the 4th exhibition of paintings of modern Russian painters in Feodosia (1928).

Works by Stepan Kolesnikov are in many museum collections, including the State Tretyakov Gallery, the State Russian Museum, the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, the Research Museum of the Russian Academy of Arts in St. Petersburg, Odessa Fine Arts Museum and others.

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