Opanas Slastion


Opanas Slastion

Opanas Slastion

Opanas Slastion (1855-1933) was a painter, illustrator, architect, art scholar, ethnographer and kobzar (itinerant Ukrainian bard) who was born in the Azov Sea coastal city of Berdyansk, now in Zaporizhia Region. As an art student in St. Petersburg, he worked for the Ministry of Defense of Russia (1887-1900), studied the Ukrainian Cossacks and headed a Ukrainian cultural association. In 1883–85 he executed 55 pen-and-ink drawings to illustrate the 1886 St. Petersburg edition of Taras Shevchenko’s epic poem Haidamaky. His genre paintings and landscapes were reproduced frequently in journals and satirical magazines, and his articles were published in periodicals in Kyiv and elsewhere. He contributed significantly to the development of Ukrainian folk art, ornaments, embroidery, wood carvings and ceramics. He was also an architect who designed dozens of public buildings in the Ukrainian ‘folk’ style. From 1900-28 he taught art at the Myrhorod Arts and Crafts School (now the Myrhorod College of Ceramics) in Poltava Region. Slastion is known for developing the imagery and art of Left-Bank Ukraine (i.e. Ukraine east of the Dnipro River). His gallery of kobzars in Left-Bank Ukraine was published in 1961. He donated his valuable collection of historical and ethnographical materials to a museum he founded in Myrhorod in 1920, and in 1928 organized the first peasant banduryst chorus (the bandura is a Ukrainian string instrument).

'Winter Afternoon in Chernihiv' (1889)

‘Winter Afternoon in Chernihiv’ (1889)

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Portrait of Kobzar Petro Siroshtan (1887)

Portrait of Kobzar Petro Siroshtan (1887)

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'Parting for the Sich'

‘Parting for the Sich’

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Illustration for Taras Shevchenko's 'Haidamaky'

Illustration for Taras Shevchenko’s ‘Haidamaky’

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'Riverbank'

‘Riverbank’

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Illustration

Illustration

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Illustration

Illustration

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