All the most important Russian problems of moral search of ideal were focused by the art and in the art in the middle and second half of the century. The image of Russia and its people's fates were connected in the artists' minds with the idea of sacrifice, personal conscience, reflection, and resolute aspiration towards the good against the bad, embodied in the image of the God-Man-Jesus the Christ. Thus in the 19th century the Orthodox of the ancient Rus acquires the shapes of Christian reflection, the se rch of the truth felt as the necessity by equally a peasant and an intelligent.
There are three directions in the exposition: academic painting of the late classicism, oriented to the classical ideal that didn't match to alive pulse of the time, gone far ahead, the broad panorama of the Russian life: the nature, the household and the history, alive people's faces, depicted in portraits and finally the group of paintings, connected with the Gospel subjects, first of all from the life of Jesus the Christ. These are pictures, intended for the Temple. It was not canonical icon painting, bu religious painting as one of the directions in the second half of 19th century.
This direction goes back to the times of Peter the Great when the Gospel events were not interpreted t in canonical icon painting image, but in the pure painting and picturesque way with all the methods of illusionism, belonged to the fashionable painting. The scale of gradation of imagery and plastic methods between classical icon and "realistic" picture in the religious painting is complex and various. No prominent artist escaped this direction of painting and it existed up to the beginning of destruction of temples, but this border is more vividly marked in 1914.
You can easily see the great part of the Russian art, focused in it all the most important spiritual and social problems of the Russian society of the second half of 19th century. Cathedrality against individualism showed deep, undestroyable inner continuity and integrity of the Russian mind and marked the main paradigm of the Russian existence.
There are about 70 names of artists, connected with the Community of travelling art exhibitions in the collection of the Russian painting, accomplished high social goals by the membership or participation in exhibitions as exponents. There are names among them, which determined the fates of the Russian art: V.Perov, I. Kramskoy, I.Shishkin, V.Makovski, N.Yaroshenko, A.Savrasov, I.Levitan, V.Polenov, and I.Repin...