Konstantin Alekseevich Korovin was born in the family of a wealthy Moscow merchant. He entered the Moscow School of Painting at the age of fourteen, later tried to study at the Academy of Arts in St. Petersburg, but did not finish it – he did not like the teaching methods. In addition to the active work of the artist, Konstantin Alekseevich worked in the theater. He has numerous decorations for various performances, as well as sketches for stage costumes.
A passion for decorative art also affected painting – the author made many of his paintings “flat”, devoid of volume. A great influence on the work of Korovin had a trip to Paris. In this city, he met with the works of the Impressionists and Symbolists.
The painting “Paper lanterns” stands out among other works of the artist by the deliberate brightness, beauty and richness, enhanced contrast. The canvas is strongly elongated, which makes it possible to comfortably place a human figure on it, without littering the space with unnecessary details. The canvas depicts a young woman in a bright red sweater and a long dark skirt falling loose folds.
The model served as the future wife of Konstantin Alekseevich, Anna Yakovlevna. Tall and elegant, the heroine lights up colorful Chinese lanterns. Blue, orange-crimson and pink – each flashlight has its own unique color. The artist as if specially tried to collect in one picture as many dissimilar contrasting colors as possible. Together with the satin scarlet satin sweater, the lanterns create a deliberate opposition to the tranquil light of the twilight sky in the background and dark green foliage forming a cold shadow. The decorative is emphasized, this work also has obvious references to the Korovin stage scenery.