“Religious Procession in Kursk Governate” is a Russian realist painting by Ilya Repin, was part of the Wanderers. The Wanderers were a group of painters who dropped out of the Art Academy so they would not have to follow the rules of the Academy. “Religious Procession in Kursk Governate” was completed between 1880 to 1883.
The work shows a annual religious procession carrying the famous icon Our Lady of Kursk from its home in the Korrennaya monastery to the City of Kursk. The painting depicts a procession of mostly peasants, but also beggars and cripples, police, military officers, and member of the provincial elite. The work continues Repin’s commentary on the Church and State. Examples of this include, a bored priest behind the idol straightening his hair, various police officers using their riding crops to beat back the crowd from getting to close to the idol, and peasants holding empty icon cases just as with much as much reverence as the actual icon is being held with.
Possible themes of the piece could be abuse of power by both the Church and the State and discrimination by the upper classes onto the lower classes. I am drawn to this because it lays bare the inter-workings of the Orthodoxy Religion. Here we have this religious procession and some of the priests are taking it less seriously than the peasants and other members of the lower classes.
Source : Religious Procession in Kursk Governorate. (2018, August 22). Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_Procession_in_Kursk_Governorate