Roman Nikitin

Born: 1691, Moscow
Died: 1753 (1754?), Moscow

Painter, teacher. Younger brother of Ivan Nikitin, father of architect Pyotr Nikitin (1727–1784). Born in Moscow in the family of a priest called Nikita Nikitin (1691). Grew up in Izmailovo (1690s). Studied under his brother Ivan and Johann Gottfried Tannauer (1690s–early 1710s). Painted a portrait of Baron Grigory Stroganov (before 1716). Sent to Europe with his brother as a fellow of Peter the Great (1716). Studied at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Venice (1716–17), under Tommaso Redi at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Florence (1717–19) and Nicolas de Largillière in Paris (1719). Returned to Russia (1720). Decorated the Triumphal Gates in Moscow celebrating the Russian victory over Sweden in the Great Northern War (1721) and painted a portrait of Baroness Maria Stroganova (1721–24). Married Mariamne Petrovna, widow of the artist Maxim Birovsky (1725). Accused of libelling Archbishop Theophan Prokopovich and arrested (1731), released (1731) and rearrested (1732). Imprisoned in the Peter and Paul Fortress (1732–37), flogged and exiled to Tobolsk along with his wife and brother (1737). Released by the Privy Council during the regency of Anna Leopoldovna (1741). Returned to Moscow (1742), where he headed a school of painting, painted icons for the St John Chrysostom Monastery and helped to restore the Triumphal Gates opposite the Annenhof Palace (1740s). Died in Moscow (1753 or 1754).

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