Alexei Venetsianov (1780-1847) is one of the founders of the genre painting in Russia and is represented by several paintings in the Russian Museum. This realist master depicted the common peasant with affection and respect; indeed, prior to his emergence as a figure in Russian art, peasants were hardly portrayed at all. His characterizations are individualized and authentic. Thus, in his works The Boy Tying his Bast Shoe, The Threshing Floor, Peasant Children in a Field, and The Sleeping Shepherd Boy strikingly manifest are the democratic aspirations of 19th century Russian art. Although the artists tended to idealize the Russia countryside with its age-old traditions, he unquestionably had broken fresh ground, this influencing the further development of Russian art.
The Sleeping Shepherd Boy By Venetsianov: