Vladimir Lenin in Smolny. 1930
190 х 287 Oil on canvas New Tretyakov, Hall 17

The artist chose a specific time and place for the action of the painting’s subject – the first months of the Soviet regime, whose Central Committee was located in the Smolny Institute for Young Noble Ladies in Petrograd. Smolny was at the time the “HQ of the Revolution”. It was important for Brodsky to achieve an absolute likeness and convey the concentrated, business-like image of Lenin. The figure is painted practically life size, which makes it seem more real and allows the viewer to feel like they are standing near the leader. The artist depicted the study just as accurately and meticulously. The painting’s colouration is as close as possible to the real colours. The artist paints every detail right up to the electrical conductor and outlet. This degree of detail helps strengthen the accuracy of portrayal and underlines the historical importance of the moment. The painting was done after Lenin’s death and was intended to canonise the image of the leader of the world proletariat.

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