Victor Mikhailovich Vasnetsov is a Russian painter who created works on the themes of national history, Russian epic novels and folk tales. In the choice of the plot of the paintings, Vasnetsov was completely free, his fantasy turned to rich images of folklore.
Vasnetsov painted a magic carpet of our fairy tales in the form of a huge bird with a ridge curved upwards and wide wings. Now Ivan is rushing on a carpet-plane through mountains, seas, huge boundless plains after a courageous journey to the far end of the world in the thirtieth kingdom, where he captured and carries with him a wonderful firebird. In another fairy tale, Ivan will find in the dungeon great kingdoms. Here are embodied the beautiful and real dreams of man about happiness, the solution of hidden secrets of nature.
The carpet in Vasnetsov’s painting floats smoothly in the air, hovering majestically above the earth, rising above the fogs and forest dalies, dispersing his frightened owls with their wings, like mighty wings. Wide expanses of the vast country, overcome by a carpet-plane, which has a wonderful power of movement. The ends of the flying carpet are spread diagonally, its silhouette resembles a bird.
A peculiar and boldly realistic combination of a written carpet floating in the air, with the poetry of a lyrical and epic landscape. Vasnetsov depicts the wonders of a fairy tale as simply as the narrator narrates about them. The lack of fantasy in form and in styling contributes to the persuasiveness of the image. We admire the flight of the carpet and the brave man standing on it.
Vasnetsov managed to get the viewer to believe in the materiality, the weight of the carpet, its rapid movement is felt thanks to the mirror smoothness of the calmly flowing far downhill. The background of the picture helps to create this impression: the evening sky with slowly floating clouds. Contrasts with the power of the carpet the light sickle of the month. The brightest color spot – a cage with a glowing fire-bird – conveys the idea of a fairy tale about the happiness of possessing the unfading light.
Vasnetsov’s painting “Carpet-plane” is an expression of faith in the strength of the people, its bright future. The artist showed great instinct and love for the deep content of wise folk tales, having found his original ways of his visual embodiment.