Painter, watercolorist, representative of the academic field. He painted portraits and landscapes, but fame came to him as the creator of monumental historical paintings. In Bryullov’s paintings, a sense of the beauty of the world gives way to tragedy and the conflict of life, to strong passions.
The fate of many people comes to the fore. The canvases are filled with the drama of the action, combined with the plastic perfection of the figures and the use of the romantic principle of illumination. Painting on the ancient themes of "Oedipus and Antigone" and "Repentance of Polynik", became for the artist a pass to study in Italy.
The composition of the painting of Oedipus and Antigonus is simple and at the same time brilliant. Written on a mythological theme, by order, however, it bears the imprint of the artist. He managed to combine an academic, realistic style of writing and romantic attention to the fate of the heroes. Two figures stand on the background of impregnable and severe rocks. Tired but still strong old man and young girl. They lean and at the same time support each other. The amazing contrast between the dark clothes and the face of Oedipus and the light robes of Antigone create an integral image.
Oedipus's face is spelled out in more detail, it shows fatigue and tenderness. He tries not so much to rely on the girl, how much to hug and protect. In his hand is a staff, as an additional support in a changing fate. Rocks protect their back, create a background and are, at the same time, a symbol of the inviolability and stability of the world. The plasticity of the Antigone figure is emphasized by the glare of light.
The painting of the great master became a synthesis of the trends of academicism and late romanticism.
Picture Before the Storm