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Kramskoy’s painting has a deep meaning for the author. This painting was written by him in connection with the loss of his two young children - sons. Grief and longing fill the picture from the inside - looking at it, tears in her eyes involuntarily wake up.
In the center of the composition is a woman in mourning attire. She is completely static - there is not a hint of her body movement in the composition. The woman is not young, her hair is already quite touched by gray hair. In her hands crumpled lace white shawl, which she brought to her face.
The woman is calm. Her grief overwhelms. But this is not insanity. She is calm, her grief is silent, but the pain that fetters her is reflected in her gaze. The viewer, looking into the eyes of this character, will feel cold on his skin from pain and empathy for the suffering of this lady.
She is inconsolable. Her whole appearance speaks of hopelessness, of the impossibility of finding a way out. She stands beside the grave of her child - what more grief can a mother befall than see the death of her own child?
The internal state of a woman is difficult to describe. The composition around her is also completely static. It seems that time has stopped in this room - the clock is not ticking or the wind is rustling. Everything is quiet and calm.
The coffin of the child is visible only at the edge. But how ridiculous and grotesque against the background of this calm and immense grief a bright floral wreath prepared for the deceased looks like. He crowns the coffin of the deceased and would be better suited for festivities on a holiday than for a funeral rite. But bright luxurious flowers crown, alas, not the bride’s head.
In the foreground in the right corner we can see a lone red flower in a pot. He reaches for the light, for life. This flower alone is a symbol of faith in a better future, a symbol of hope for the continuation of life. He gives faith that the pain will subside and something good will return to this house and fill it with happiness.