Ge, N. N.
Peter I Interrogating Tsarevich Alexis.
Peter I Interrogating Tsarevich Alexis in Peterhof
Autograph Copy of the 1871 Painting of the Same Title Located in the State Tretyakov Gallery
Ge's work "Peter I Interrogating the Tsarevich Alexei" (1871) reflects his involvement with the Peredvizhniki. The story of the historical interrogation, in which the Tsar so prized justice that he condemned his own son to death, illustrates the artist's concern with the ideals of virtue and equity during this period. Ge's attention to historical detail in order to create an atmosphere of authenticity constitutes a significant contribution to Russian history painting. At the same time, however, Ge's association with the Wanderers or Peredvizhniki led him astray from certain heartfelt aesthetic beliefs and ultimately precipitated a serious personal crisis. In 1876 the painter abandoned his career and moved to the Ukraine. (00226)