Pyotr Fyodorovich Sokolov

Born: 1791, Moscow
Died: 1848, Stary Merchik (near Kharkiv)

Painter. Father of Pyotr Sokolov and Alexander Sokolov, brother-in-law of Alexander Brullov and Karl Brullov, great-grandfather of Lev Bruni. Born to a rich family in Moscow (1791), but his father died and his stepfather lost all the family property in a game of cards, forcing his mother to move to St Petersburg and entrust him to the care of the Imperial Academy of Arts (1800). Studied under Vasily Shebuyev at the Imperial Academy of Arts (1800–10). Awarded a minor silver medal (1806), major silver medals (1807, 1808), minor gold medal (1809) and a first-class certificate (1810), but failed to secure a first gold medal, which would have given him the right to a paid foreign fellowship. Graduated with the title of free artist (1810) and forced to give private lessons in watercolour painting to earn a living (1810s). Married Juliana Brullov, sister of Alexander and Karl Brullov, who suspected him of marrying their sister for her money (1820). Painted watercolour portraits, which enjoyed great popularity among members of the imperial family and upper classes (1820s–40s). Academician of watercolour portrait painting (1839). Travelled through France and Germany (1842–43), returned to St Petersburg (1843–46) and moved to Moscow when his sight began to fail (1846–48). Caught typhoid at the estate of Countess Olga Orlova-Davydova near Kharkiv and buried at the local cemetery (1848).

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