The Painting by Roerich “Celestial Battle”

Nicholas Roerich is a kind of author whose works are distinguished by profound philosophical and lyrical motifs. The themes of his paintings are diverse and complex, spiritual and sublime. The favorite images of Roerich’s creativity, in turn, can be considered images of sky and clouds.

The motif of the sky and clouds clearly sounds in Roerich’s famous work, such as “Heavenly Battle.” The painting was written in 1912, in a difficult time for the history of Russia. Unusual canvas, created on canvas made of cardboard using mixed tempera technique, is currently kept in the State Russian Museum in St. Petersburg.

The picture “Celestial battle” is filled not only with artistic images, but with symbols, in which, first and foremost, the features and spirit of that era were embodied. The most part of the work is occupied by the image of clouds, which are heavy images that carry a threat that is unknown, but becomes more and more visible and visible. The effect of tempera painting reminds me partly of a pastel sketch. The picture is characterized by numerous, contrasting transitions of light and shadow. “Celestial battle” and represents a kind of battle between Light and Darkness, the time when the element of the day comes. The picture of Roerich demonstrates the beauty of the complex state of nature. A real confrontation unfolded in the sky. And this heavenly confrontation filled the entire space of the picture plane. The element spread its borders far beyond the canvas, which shows all the power and greatness of natural forces. From the point of view of Roerich,...even the anger of the elements is full of special beauty and cleansing freedom.

Roerich is the greatest master of the transmission of mental states and a different range of feelings and moods. All the subtle transitions of the states of nature or spirit the artist embodies with the use of colors, which are necessary, from the position of tonality and color. The artistic method of Nicholas Roerich is distinguished by the openness of colorful images, the emotional form, the dynamics of lines and colors, symbolism, the philosophy of works. Roerich’s paintings are precisely capacious prayers or laconic phrases of the wise man, in which the desire for the sublime and the simultaneous desire for simplicity and peace are combined in an amazing way.

The picturesque work “Celestial Battle” reflects the interweaving, the “battle” of color and form, light and shadow, heaven and earth. Here the reception of the antithesis or opposition is clearly realized, the reception of a global contrast, the eternal confrontation of the various forces. This philosophical phenomenon of “eternal battle” could feel and convey the great genius of Roerich in that vague twilight, the time of the beginning of new wars and revolutions. As a true artist, Roerich lived in tact with the life of his Motherland, loved and hated with her, and even when this Motherland turned away from him, he retained to this day the great faith of the creator, this great love for his native land, its history and the people. Therefore, the work of Nicholas Roerich is still so great and valuable for us.


The Painting by Roerich “Celestial Battle”