Vladimir Borovikovsky

Born: 1757, Myrhorod (Poltava Province)
Died: 1825, St Petersburg

Painter, draughtsman, teacher. Born in Myrhorod to a Cossack icon-painter called Luka Borovyk (1757). Studied painting under his father and served in the same Cossack regiment as his father and brothers (from 1774). Resigned with the rank of lieutenant and settled in Myrhorod (1783), where he painted icons for the Trinity Church (1784) and allegorical portraits for the visit of Catherine the Great to Kremenchug (1786–87). Invited to St Petersburg by Catherine the Great (1788), where he changed his surname to Borovikovsky and studied under Dmitry Levitsky (1788–92) and Johann Baptist von Lampi I (1792–95). Academician of portraiture (1795), board member of the Imperial Academy of Arts (1802). Opened a private studio and painted over five hundred portraits, including Catherine the Great (1794), Paul I (1800) and Madame de Staël (1812). Painted icons for the iconostasis of the Kazan Cathedral in St Petersburg (1804–11) and the Church of the Intercession in the village of Romanovna in Chernihiv Province (1814–15). Joined a masonic lodge (1802) and the mystical sect of hypnotist and prophetess Ekaterina Tatarinova, who held séances at St Michael’s Castle (1819–24). Died of a heart attack in St Petersburg (1825). Buried in the Trinity Church of the Smolensk Cemetery (1825) and reburied at the St Alexander Nevsky Monastery (1932).

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