Dimitri Semionovich Stelletski (1875-1947)
oil on canvas
Born in Brest-Litovsk, the son of a military engineer. Studied at the Imperial Academy in St. Petersburg (1896-1903), and continued to live in the capital, working as a sculptor, painter, illustrator and set designer until 1913. Fascinated by the art and culture of Pre-Petrine Russia, he travelled around the country extensively, visiting old towns and monasteries. In his memoirs, he wrote: “From an early age I understood that only by studying the artistic heritage of our ancestors, and even …by imitating it slavishly, can one, indeed must one resurrect native Russian beauty…I know that my attraction to (this theme) is something I was born with and not inculcated with.” Made painted plaster and wooden sculptures, set decorations and costume designs for the Rimsky-Korsakov opera Snegurochka and Tolstoy’s play Tsar Feodor Ivanovich, as well as paintings and book illustrations. Emigrated to Paris in 1914. Among his most famous works is the decoration of the Paris church of Saint Serge in the Rue de Crimée.