Portraits from the American Southwest by Nicolai Ivanovich Fechin

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Nicolai Ivanovich Fechin
Nicolai Fechin

Portrait of Mademoiselle Podbelskaya

Nicolai Ivanovich Fechin’s (1881 – 1955) portraits vividly captured the emotions of his subject, their eyes carrying an intensity that created powerful paintings. Depicting the people of the American southwest in the early-to-mid-1900s, Fechin, though Russian born, became known for his work that paid homage to Native Americans and peasants from Taos County in New Mexico.

But Fechin didn’t immigrate to the States until 1923, when he was 42 – he grew up in Kazan, Russia, and was enrolled in the Kazan School of art by the time he was 13, before moving on to the Imperial Academy of Petrograd. Though his technical skill is apparent in the realism with which he depicted faces and bodies, Fechin’s handling of paint on canvas was innovative: Fechin’s artwork is characterized by its broad brushstrokes and bright colors.

While in the States, Nicolai Fechin found himself moving to Taos after being diagnosed with Tuberculosis, and the area would inspire some of his greatest works. In Taos, he freely painted Pueblo Indians, peasants, and natives, capturing their culture. This was an artistic relief to Fechin, who had been criticized in Russia by press outlets for depicting peasants, considered by many to be unworthy due to their socio-economic status. Nicolai Fechin gave a space for these individuals to be recognized, honoring them as subjects of his work.

For more information on Nicolai Ivanovich Fechin’s portraits and paintings from the American Southwest, please watch Ackerman Fine Art’s brief video on the artist below:

 Ackerman’s Fine Art is actively purchasing works by painter Nicolai Ivanovich Fechin. 

Kenny Ackerman is an Art Dealer in New York, specializing in Fine Art Paintings from 19th-21st century Europe and America. To buy or sell original paintings by artists we represent, contact Ackerman’s Fine Art here.

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