The composition of Perov’s painting “A Sermon in the Village”

The composition of Perov’s painting “A Sermon in the Village”

In this picture Perov shows his subtle and all-seeing sense of humor.
The work of the artist with a satirical bias, she ridicules as a boring and meaningless speech of the priest, who can neither interest, nor even attract attention to themselves, and the faith of people who come to listen to this sermon.
It seemed to me that almost everyone who gathered this church now is doing their own thing.
And only a little naive girl who stands right in front of the preacher, listens and watches with interest and curiosity.
She hardly understands anything, but her attention is so sincere that when you look at her, you involuntarily look around with such bold cleanness.

The rest of the people are very busy, each of them has more important things to do.
I wonder

what they consider more important than words about their faith, and knowledge about God? The first row, which is well lit, is occupied by a couple of lovers.
Peering into the picture, I could hear them whispering.
The girl tries to cover herself with some church book that she has in her hands, but at the same time her whole attention is absorbed by the words of the young man, her head is turned, her eyes are lowered, she tries not to miss a single word or sound.
Oh, if the words of the clergyman were as passionate, then the reaction of people might be different.
But while the most interested figure is a man sleeping on the front row.
He thinks, probably, that he can afford it without any consequences.
Even more curious are the matters with which the people behind him are engaged.
There, a young man, obviously a buyer or seller, traded with an old woman for a carpet.
And this is in the church! The sun illuminates two more figures.
They are poor people who, from fatigue and perpetual labors, clearly do not understand where they are.

It is interesting, but the artist has found an excellent approach to briefly describe the attitude of other people in the church.
Perov portrayed them in the shadows, symbolically showing that they are cut off from the light of biblical truth.
And they prove soy indifference by not even looking at the priest.
Thus, the painter leaves his custom to always accurately describe all the details.
But this decision seems to me to be the most correct in this situation.


The composition of Perov’s painting “A Sermon in the Village”