Description of the painting by Svyatoslav Roerich “King Solomon”

Description of the painting by Svyatoslav Roerich “King Solomon”

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At the beginning of the 20s of the 20th century, Svyatoslav Roerich became interested in writing paintings on religious subjects. One of these paintings was the painting of King Solomon, painted in the autumn of 1923 under the impression of a visit to Italy.

This picture was supposed to be part of a series of paintings dedicated to the spiritual wealth of all earthly civilizations. It was written not without interference from Nicholas Roerich - the father of the painter, a famous writer and literary critic. The influence of the father can be traced, first of all, in the guise of a man in the picture, facial features of Tsar Solomon exactly repeat the facial features of Nicholas Roerich.

In the foreground of the picture, the viewer sees a large bowl, which is held in the hands of a rather elderly man with a long, beard falling down. The artist paid special attention to the creation of this beard, drawing the smallest details as if it was not a drawing, but a sculptural composition.

Those who are well acquainted with the legend of Solomon know that the presented cup is the cup of life, which the king drank in full, erecting his famous temple on the Mount of the Covenant. The man holding the cup is Solomon himself. His eyes are half-closed, dozens of wrinkles are visible under them.

The king is dressed in a plain, apparently silk, bathrobe. On the king’s hand is a gold ring with the Star of David. The king’s clothes are lavishly decorated, which allows you to immediately understand that the viewer is not an ordinary person. This is also evidenced by an expensive hat.

The background of the painting adorns the Temple of Solomon, traced against the backdrop of the last rays of the setting sun. There is a certain sadness and remoteness in the appearance of the picture, it seems that the legendary king no longer connects anything with this land, except for the cup, which he stubbornly continues to hold in his hands, despite the fact that it was empty a long time ago. It is the emptiness of the cup that becomes the reason for the sadness that is read on the royal face, which has been exhausted by wrinkles.

At this time, the picture is in a private collection and is not exhibited for public display.

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