Anton Losenko (Антон Павлович Лосенко) (1737-1773)
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Anton Losenko was a Ukrainian-Russian Neoclassical painter who specialized in historical subjects and portraits. Anton was born to a family of a Ukrainian kossak. Soon he became an orphan and at the age of seven was sent to a Court Choir at Saint Petersburg. In 1753 as he lost his voice but had shown talents to the painting he was sent to apprenticeship to the artist Ivan Argunov. In 1758 after 5 and a half years of apprenticeship he was admitted to the Imperial Academy of Arts. Among the paintings created there were the Portrait of Ivan Shuvalov.
In 1760 the Academy sent him to Paris to study art under French Neoclassical painter Jean Restout. There he painted a large Miracolus Catch painting on the New Testament motives. In 1766-1769 Losenko worked in Italy, studied the Italian art and especially Rafael paintings. There he created Kain and Avel paintings.
In 1769 Losenko returned to Saint-Petersburg. He got an offer to present a historical painting for receiving a membership to the Imperial Academy of Arts. He painted Vladimir and Rogneda canvas on the Kievan Rus’ history. The painting not only brought him the title of the Academician but also the professorship position to the Imperial Academy of Art (since 1770 he is Adjunct-Professor, since 1772 he is a full Professor and the Director of the Academy). At this position Losenko wrote text book Short Explanation of the Human Proportions that served a few generations of Russian painters. He worked as the Director of the Academy until his death in 1773.
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