Samokhvalov was a master of the monumental composition. An elegantly staged tableau shows family members discussing the dramatic moments of the past. The younger, non combatant, members of the family listen in quiet respect to the young soldier's story. The father seems to remember his own horrors of war and the grandmother in the background seems keen to forget everything.
Oil on canvas
235 × 338 cm; 92½ × 133 in.
Samokhvalov was a member of the Leningrad School of Painting. In 1914 enrolled in the Imperial Academy of Arts in Saint Pertsburg and, amongst others, one of his teachers was Kuzma Petrov-Vodkin. In 1917 he took part in the exhibition of the Mir Iskusstva. He had significant success with his images heroes of labour and sport. In 1967 he was awarded the Order of Lenin.