Vasily Grigoryevich Perov
An artist Vasily Perov, who continued in the traditions of Pavel Fedotov, devoted his work to portraying the life of Russia’s democratic strata of society.
An artist Perov was one of the founders of the famous Society of Travelling Art Exhibitions (“Peredvizhniki”), a union of the most progressive Russian artists, whose aim was to serve the people through their art. His canvases, which were at time mordant satirical exposures as“ Sermon in the Village” (1861), “A Religious Procession in a Village at Easter” (1861), or ones that revealed profound grief, as “Seeing off the Dead Man” (1865) proved of great value in revolutionizing public opinion.
“Sermon in the Village” is the earliest of Perov’s works. It was painted the year the peasant were “freed”. The artist has directed his satire against the existing order of serfdom. In the scene in a village church the solemnity befitting the occasion is missing. The ray of light filtering through the window illuminates a little knot of parishioners.
a little knot of parishioners — небольшая группка (кучка) прихожан
strata — мн. ч. от stratum — слои (общества)
a founder — основатель
canvas — полотно
mordant — колкий, саркастический
exposure — разоблачение
“Sermon in the Village” — “Служба в деревне” (назв. картины)
“A Religious Procession in a Village at Easter” — “Сельский крестный ход на Пасхе” (назв. картины)
“Seeing off the Dead Man” — “Проводы покойника” (назв. картины)
peasant — крестьянин
satire — сатира
the solemnity befitting the occasion is missing — торжественность, приличествующая случаю, отсутствует
to illuminate — освещать