Volkov Efim Efimovich called the poet of fogs and Russian autumn. A talented landscape painter, he left a beautiful collection of pictures of nature full of charm and light sadness.
The son of a St. Petersburg paramedic, he paid tribute to the state service of the clerical counselor at the Ministry of Justice. And only having retired, he allowed himself to enter a drawing school, having completed a four-year course of study in a year, became a free student of the Academy of Arts. The eighth Mobile Exhibition of 1880 presented a painting by Volkov “Autumn”, marked by the best among landscape painting.
The swampy places around St. Petersburg inspired the artist to work. Before us is the early northern autumn, with a heavy, overcast sky, gusty, cold wind, damp and shrill, like pain. In the foreground is a small, overgrown grass, swampy river, which the ford cows of a nearby village have crossed ford. The ford is shallow, and the still green grass is wounded by the hooves of animals. The winding, shattering channel gleams sadly under the cold, steel sky, in some places reflecting its emptiness on its surface.
The banks of the river, covered with small bushes, are getting closer to the water with a gentle slope. The left bank seems a bit higher due to the hill rising from the river, on which in places high, old trees are visible, with a few chaotic strokes, stretching into the low sky. The blue distance does not hide in itself neither secrets nor riddles, it is also sad and monotonous. Leaving to the right, the river bed will repeat its curves many times, which are not very distinguishable between themselves.
And although some trees are trying to bring a little bit of color into the general pastel tone with dirty red spots. But they do not make the picture more joyful; rather, on the contrary, the golden autumn somehow does not work. There is not a single living soul in the picture, but the mood of poverty, despondency and decay is literally read in every stroke.