Whether the famous marine painter Ivan Ayvazovsky an admiral was?
In publications Ayvazovsky`s creativity sometimes are mentioned that he had the admiral`s rank as option - had a rank with the right of carrying an admiral`s uniform. Let`s understand what rank actually great artist had. It is important as in imperial Russia social standing of the person and his opportunity to influence various aspects of life (Ayvazovsky equipped the whole city) was often connected not only with talent, but also with an official standing in high-ranking hierarchy.
The first rank, and respectively and the personal nobility, Ivan Konstantinovich Ayvazovsky received on release from Academy of Arts. About it there is a curious document.
“ September 23, 1839.
of Sankt - the St. Petersburg imperial Academy of Arts owing to the charter, the power, from the monarch to it this, the pupil Ivan Gayvazovsky trained in it since 1833 in depiction of sea types which ended a course of the doctrine for its good progress and especially the decency recognized in it, honest and laudable behavior, building in a rank of the artist, uravnyaemy on most gracious this Academy of the privilege with 14 - m a class and nagradya its sword, awards with descendants it in eternal childbirth to have the rights and advantages, that vysochaysheyu the privilege that appropriated. This certificate in St. Petersburg behind signing of the President of Academy and with the appendix of its big press " is given;.
The rank 14 - go a class, received by Ayvazovsky, was called modestly - “ collegiate registrar “. Formally it was only the advance payment as the artist could use a rank at appointment to an official position. But before passed nearly five years during which the artist who acquired the right for a pensioner trip abroad traveled around Europe. And this travel was not just successful, and triumphal. In 1844 Ayvazovsky returned to St. Petersburg topped with the European glory, having become the member of several foreign academies of Arts.
Practically at once Ayvazovsky was given prestigious assignment - on September 21 it was ranked as the General sea staff in a rank “ first painter “ having granted the right to wear a uniform of the Sea ministry. Here it is worth making a reservation that he acquired the right to wear a uniform not of the serviceman, and the official voyenno - sea department. It had this right until the end of life. In a uniform of the military official it also represented itself(himself) on a self-portrait in 1892.
In several days after transfer on service Ayvazovsky gained also official recognition as the painter, on September 29 to it gave the rank of the academician of painting. Office career of the artist developed promptly. In many respects it is connected with the fact that to Ayvazovsky the emperor Nicholas I considering and himself involved in painting as sometimes finished drawing on others landscapes of a figure of tell-tales had a kind feeling. Subsequently the Itinerant Ya. D. Minchenkov wrote down memories of Kirill Vikentyevich Lemokh who was close familiar with Ayvazovsky of the artist`s relations with the emperor: “ At travel by the sea by wheel steamship the tsar took with himself and Ayvazovsky. Standing on a casing of one steamship wheel, the tsar shouted to Ayvazovsky standing on other wheel: “ Ayvazovsky! I am the tsar of the earth, and you are the tsar of the sea! “.
It is natural that such goodwill of the emperor affected the office growth of Ayvazovsky who soon received a rank of the privy councilor. It is a rank 3 - go a class, in army to it there correspond ranks the general - the lieutenant or vice-the admiral. The high-ranking government officials had a similar state rank: members of the State Council, senators, ministers. It is natural that existence of such rank opened for Ayvazovsky doors in any public institutions, giving the chance to easily resolve many issues including concerning people to whom he favored.
Also another is important, presence at Ayvazovsky high voyenno - a sea rank, though state, allowed naval commanders to bring squadrons of the fighting ships into Feodosiya where Ivan Konstantinovich began to live almost constantly to congratulate the marine painter on the scheduled anniversary.
Ayvazovsky stayed in a rank of the privy councilor almost all the creative life, the following rank of the valid privy councilor (in army to it there corresponded ranks of the full general and admiral) he received already from Nicholas II in 1895. For the creativity any Russian artist did not receive a similar rank.
It should be noted that Ayvazovsky for the long life became the gentleman of almost all Russian awards (except St. Andrew the First-Called and St. Georgy) which received from four Russian emperors. Besides, at it was much and foreign awards, often rare and exotic. The Turkish sultan who was repeatedly buying works of the artist and awarded with his several awards, including an award of the Ottoman - the highest award of the Turkish empire was an admirer of talent of Ayvazovsky. After the Armenian slaughter arranged with Turks at the end of the XIX century, Ayvazovsky threw out all Turkish awards in the sea, having informed on it the Turkish consul, and having declared that the sultan can arrive similarly with his cloths.
Various awards and honorary titles at Ayvazovsky by the end of life was so many that he could not even list them. But were also such of which he very was proud. With great pleasure Ayvazovsky wrote the self-portrait for Uffizi Gallery in Florence similar to honor only several Russian painters received.
Thanks to the high official position Ayvazovsky a lot of good made for native to it Feodosiya. On the means he constructed Art gallery and the Archaeological museum in the city. It is a lot of forces and own means it that in the city the water supply system and the railroad appeared had to spend. It is curious that he was so sure that “ will punch “ construction of the railroad that else before its opening painted the picture “ The First train in Feodosiya “. Thanks to communications in the Sea ministry Ayvazovsky promoted construction in the city of trade port. The artist was a trustee of many feodosiysky educational institutions, allocating big sums of money for the help to poor pupils and the needing teachers. And children for whom he became godfather or newlyweds to whom it allocated money for a wedding, and cannot be counted.
Ayvazovsky by right became the first honourable citizen of Feodosiya. When Ivan Konstantinovich Ayvazovsky died, all city came to follow him to the grave. Buried the artist with military honors near ancient Armenian church St. Sergiya. On its sarcophagus made a symbolical inscription: “ Given rise by mortal, left on itself immortal memory “.
Feodosiyets were right, memory of their great compatriot continues to live. And the confusion arising sometimes with Ayvazovsky`s ranks demonstrates only that for people not its high position, but talent of the painter and sincere aspiration to do good was the main thing.