war artist

“I am a history painter,” says Fyodor Usypenko, one of the artists who created the huge diorama entitled “Alexander Suvorov’s Alpine Campaign”. Led by Suvorov, the many-thousand strong Russian army did something next to impossible in 1799, forcing its way across the high snow-clad mountain passes to surprise the enemy. Usypenko also took part in restoring Franz Rubo’s renowned panorama called “The Battle of Borodino” featuring the battle near Moscow that foreshadowed Napoleon’s defeat in Russia and later in Europe.But Usypenko paints not only far-away historical events. He created a diorama for the BorodinoMuseum, which depicted the battle near the village fought by the Soviet soldiers defending Moscow in 1941. He also commemorated on paper and on canvas some episodes of the last days of the Second World War, when the Soviet Union declared war on militarist Japan.The Second World War dominates Usypenko’s work. His canvases and dioramas feature battles in the foothills of the Caucasus, the lower reaches of the Kuban, near Novorossiisk, on the Dnieper at the town of Kremenchug, in Stalingrad, in Poland and in Konigsberg. He paints attacks, crossings, marches.


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