Novosibirsk (Unit 3)

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Unit 3. Entertaining Guide.



1. Do you know the meanings of these words?

Drawing, sketch, painting, icon, poster, picture, reproduction, illustration, masterpiece, collection, exhibition.


2. Explain the difference between the following pairs of words:

a. landscape/countryside

b. shape/pattern

c. watercolour/oil

d. portrait/still life

e. draw/point

f. canvas/icon


3. Discuss these points:

-How important is colour to you in place you work or your home?

-How do you feel about the colour scheme in your classroom?

-Which do you consider to be the best colours for a school?

-Does colour affect how people feel or do their work?


Use the words below:

Strong    subtle    brilliant    muted    vivid    deep    soft    faint    bright    bold intense    vibrant


4. How good are you at painting?


Look at these extracts and match one to the painting.



The next important period in Russian painting is the second half of the 19th century, when a broad popular upsurge against serfdom gave rise to the democratic trend of the peredvizhniks. "Dispossessed in a Fire" (1871) by Pryanishnikov is typical of this trend, which was concerned with the destiny of the Russian peasantry, of the Russian people as a whole.


The flowering of Russian art in the first thirty years of the 19th century is linked with the spiritual revival of Russian society after the victorious war against Napoleon. Indicative in this respect are portraits by Tropinin, an artist who came from a family of serfs. His portraits reflected Moscow's free and easy life style in Pushkin's day.


One of the best works of the Soviet section is "Still Life" (1922) by Mashkov, a prominent founder of the "Jack of Diamonds" group. A distinctive feature of this painter is his brilliant pictorial temperament and lively colouring. The idea of Life's triumph, fundamental to his art, is expressed in the Novosibirsk still life through its monumental composition large-scale objects and rich intensity of colour.


Kuprin's landscape "Dniepropetrovsk. The Coke Mill" (1930) evokes an image of the industrial transformation of the young Soviet state through dynamic rhythms and complexity of colour.

The portrait of the actress Stepanova (1933), a representative of the new Soviet intelligentsia, by Konchalovsky, emphasizes independence, self-confidence, energy, spiritual and physical emancipation.


5. Read the text and put questions to it.

The Novosibirsk Picture Gallery

Today the Novosibirsk Picture Gallery is one of Siberia's most conspicuous collections and numbers about six thousand works of art. Exhibited here are over 5 hundred works of painting, sculpture, graphic and applied arts. The leading place belongs to the sections of Russian and Soviet art. Old Russian art was more democratic than Byzantine art although it was undoubtedly influenced by the latter, hence its more lyrical and lucid character. Old Russian painting is represented by several works of the art school of the 16th and 17th centuries. During that period Russian painting, preserving its classical feature, had become more narrative and miniature. Among the most valuable icons in the collection are "Dimitri Solunsky" and "The Virgin Enthroned", which show a deep feeling for line and colour. Siberian icons make up quite a special group in the collection. Painted by folk artists, these icons are distinguished by simplified iconographic techniques, decorativeness and bright colours.

Among the peredvizhniks' realistic landscapes, the works of Shishkin ("The Pine Wood", 1888; "Lush Grass"), and Kuindzhi are particularly well-known. The latter was notably preoccupied with light effects. His "Moon Night" belongs to the cycle of canvases relating to the famous picture "Moon Night on the Dnieper" (1881).

Sketches by the great painter Surikov, a native of Siberia, convey the ethnic features of local residents ("A Minusinsk Tartar", 1909; "A Cossack Girl", 1913). Art at the turn of the 20th century, complex, contradictory, and abounding in trends as it was, is represented fairly well in the collection. One of the major works of that period is "The Gipsy" by Golovin, a designer of stage sets who was involved in the famous Russian ballet seasons in Paris.

The artistic trend called the "Union of Russian Artists" is represented by Zhukovsky's "Interior" (1918) which deals with Chekhov's theme of declining manor-houses.

The pride of the gallery are the works by Nikolai Roerich, an enlightener, scientist and traveller. The sixty paintings, a gift from the artist's son, were created in the last decade of his life. They reflect two major subjects of the painter's art -Russia ("Pskov", 1935-1936; "Idols", 1943, "Nastasya Mikulichna", 1943) and the East ("Santana", sketches of the Himalayas). Among them "Nastasya Mikulichna" and "Santana" evoke special interest. The former contains the image - symbol that expressed Roerich's views on the historical ways of Russia. The latter testifies to Roerich's interest in eastern philosophy.

Works by Gritsyuk, a Novosibirsk painter, represent the art of the last decade. His still lives and industrial landscapes are expressive and decorative.

A significant place in the collection belongs to the works of Novosibirsk painters, graphic artists and sculptors (V.Semenova, G.Kurochkina-Domashenko, N.Domashenko, Ya.Yakovlev and many others). They constantly participate both in local, republican and all-Union exhibitions. Their art is marked by high humanism with all the diversity of genres and subjects, as well as by a quest for style.





Ex.1. Answer the following questions:

1.    How many works of art are there in the Novosibirsk picture gallery?

2.    What sections does the leading place belong to?

3.    What is Old Russian art represented by?

4.    What genres do the works of Shishkin and Kuindzhi belong to?

5.    What do Surikov's sketches convey?

6.    What artistic trend is represented by the canvas "Interior", 1918?

7.    Why do many painters depict people of Siberia?

8.    What is the gallery proud of?

9.    Do many Novosibirsk painters exhibit their canvas in the picture gallery? What are their works?


Ex.2. Complete the following sentences using the words from the box, according to the text:

1.    Exhibited here are over 5 hundred works of...

2.    These valuable icons show...

3.    These icons are distinguished by...

4.    One of the major works of that period is…

5.    The sixty paintings, a gift from the artist's son, were created...

6.    The former contains the image-symbol that...

7.    Their art is marked by...

painting, sculpture, graphic and applied arts;

high humanism with all the diversity of genres and subjects;

simplified iconographic techniques, decorativeness and bright colours;

expressed Roerich's views on the historical ways of Russia;

a deep feeling for line and colours;

in the last decade of his life;

"The Gipsy" by Golovin, a designer of stage sets who was involved in the famous Russian ballet seasons in Paris.


Ex.3. Find in the text

a)       synonyms to: artist, canvas, present, reflect, show.

b)      antonyms to: to be involved in, to contain, bright colours, to participate.


Ex.4. Which is the odd word out?

a)       a drawing, a sketch, an icon, a picture, a canvas, a declaration.

b)      Still life, portrait, landscape, genre, seaside, masterpiece.


Ex.5. Translate the following groups of words into Russian:

to paint-painter-painterly-painting;

to depict-pictorial-picture-picturesque;

to master-master-mastery-masterpiece;

to portray-portrayal-portrait-portraitist-portraiture;



Ex.6. Find words in the text to match these definitions:

1.      a group of objects that have been collected;

2.      a person who lives in a place;

3.      a collection of things shown publicly;

4.      a person who designs something;

5.      a type or category of an artistic work, especially painting.


Speech Exercises.

Ex. 1. Answer the questions:

1.      What is one of Siberia's most conspicuous collections?

2.      How many paintings are there in the Novosibirsk picture gallery?

3.      What art school is Old Russian painting represented?

4.      Do Siberian icons make up quite a special group in the collection?

5.      What canvases by famous artists of the XIX century can you find in this picture gallery?

6.      What is the gem of Novosibirsk picture gallery?

7.      Whose brush creates the expressive and decorative industrial landscapes of the last decade?


Ex.2. Imagine the conversation between the man and the woman, either just before or just after visiting of the Novosibirsk picture gallery.


Ex.3. Comment on the following quotations:

a)      Art ... is a veil rather than a mirror (O. Wilde, Intensions)

b)      Only skilled artists should draw from live models.

c)      Art has an educative mission.


Ex.4. Look at the picture and describe it.



Ex.5. Learn the following dialogue.

A: Oh, look, what a wonderful landscape!

B: No wonder. It attracted your attention. It's Shishkin's "The Pine-Wood". It is the real masterpiece.

A: Shishkin was fond of Russian nature, wasn't he?

B: Yes, he was. He loved the tranquillity of Russian woods and the vast expanses of Russian fields.

A: At all times artists often turned to nature for inspiration.

B: Shishkin did, of course. And I should say, he bad an instinctive feeling for nature.

A: The painting looks very realistic. You get an impression that you are in this wood yourself, don't you?

B: Yes, you are right. I quite agree with you. Shishkin is famous for his simplicity and charity of his artistic language.


Ex.6. Points to ponder:

1.  Art belongs to people.

2.  Art is truthful only when it serves life.

3.  There are two kinds of art and a pretence of art.

4.  Any artistic development has a define social background, and abstractionism is no exception.

5.  A great architect must be a great sculptor or painter.

6.  We know individuality to be an indispensable quality of any genuine work of art.

7.  It is said that the role of the artist in society has always been and always will be to express the life of his day.




Ex.7. Make a survey, giving a portrait of any Siberian artist.


Ex.8. Quiz. Are you a good expert of painting?

1. The Tate Gallery is placed in …

a) London    b) New York    c) Novosibirsk    d) Moscow


2. The pride of the Novosibirsk picture gallery is …

a)    the collection of Levitan

b)   the collection of Shishkin

c)    the collection of N.Roerich

d)   the collection of Icons


3. V.Tretyakov is the founder of the picture gallery in …

a) Novosibirsk   b) Moscow   c) St. Petersburg   d) Pskov


4. Andrew Rublyov is famous for his painting…

a)    "Golden Autumn"

b)    "The Pine Wood"

c)    "Trinity"

d)   "The last day of Pompeii"


5. The canvas "The Volga Boatmen" was painted by the great Russian painter …

a) B.Perov    b) I.Repin    c) N.Ge     d) B.Surikov


Ex.9. Give a brief talk about an outstanding landscape painter. Choose one you really have you liking for.


Ex.10. Give an account of your own visit to a picture gallery.


Ex.11. Select a reproduction of any historic genre painting and discuss it according to the following outline:

1. The general effect

(The title and name of the artist. The period or trend represented. Where it is exhibited)

2. The contents of the picture

(The Place, Time and setting, dress, environment, etc.)

3. The composition and colouring

4. Interpretation and evaluation

(Artistic skill, feelings, moods, ideas it evokes in the viewer)


Ex.12. Group discussion

Topic 1. A great painting enriches our life, just as a great poem does or a great musical composition.

Topic 2. The masterpieces of painting are an inexhaustible source of beauty.


Ex.13. Project: “How similar and different are Novosibirsk and London and their picture galleries” (The Tale Gallery and the Novosibirsk picture Gallery)


Ex.14. Compare the painting in Great Britain and in Siberia


Great Britain


Famous art galleries, museums

Great artists

Favourite canvases

Proud of the gallery

Popular activities to honour great painters

Well-known films about the artists





Ex.15. How would you rank these kinds of entertaining in order of importance?

sport, gardening, photography, theatre, music, cinema, TV, disco, reading, swimming, painting, singing














Ex. 16. What do you take into account when you organize leisure time in such a way?


Ex. 17. What are people's reasons for collecting reproductions of loving pictures?


Ex.18. What other museums and art galleries would you like to visit? Why?


Ex.19. Sum up in what way you understand these:

1.           "A picture is a poem without words"

Horace (65-8BC)

2.           "All art is but imitation of nature"

Seneca (4BC-65AD)


Ex.20. Respond to the following statement using the essential vocabulary:

"A mere copier of nature can never produce anything great"


Ex.21. Write a composition: Why I like painting?

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