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The painting Winter was painted by Vasiliev in 1871. It depicts an endless winding rural road along the forest. Everything around is densely covered with snow, but on a deserted road there are no traces of a sled, a woman and a little boy wander along it. They are so tired and frozen from the path that they walked, stooping, hiding their hands in the sleeves of their clothes and pressing them to their chest to warm them. The picture is filled with sadness and loneliness. The stunted bushes, fragments of branches and massive trees are covered in snow.
From frost, it seems as if their branches turned into ice spines. Snow does not reflect the brilliance of the sun's rays and does not play with bright reflections. It is muted white with an admixture of a yellow hue and bluish shadows, flowing from trees and bushes.
In the foreground, are depicted: a woman in a brown sheepskin coat and a dark green long skirt, a head covered with a scarf and a boy wearing a sheepskin coat and black pants, a hat with earflaps on his head.
Trees covered with snow are on one side of them, and bushes in the snow, dry from frost, are on the other.
The snowy, desolate, winding road that goes into the distance merges on the horizon with the sky of such a sad shade. The horizon line between them is blurred, as if it does not exist in nature. The sky is a gray-yellow palette with a small clearance in the distance.
All of Fyodor Vasilyev’s short work can be divided into two parts, before writing the Thaw picture and after. The first period of creativity was distinguished by the brightness and expressiveness of the color palette. The second period became more faded and dull.
The painting winter belongs to the second period, after the creation of the masterpiece The Thaw, which brought the artist worldwide recognition.
Today, the painting by Fedor Vasiliev is in Russia at the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow.