Sophia Kramskoy, the only girl among herbrothers (and therefore, probably, father's favorite), was born supposedly in 1866 (according to other sources in 1867). She studied at a regular gymnasium, but thanks to the creative atmosphere that reigned in her home, she soon became interested in painting. Father tried to develop his daughter's artistic skills and became her first teacher. In her childhood, Sonya was considered ugly among her acquaintances, but in her youth, as happens with many girls, she got prettier. However, for her father she was always the most beloved model. Even when the girl was cut from her hair due to illness and an uneven hedgehog grew on her head (Sonya tried to cover it with a lacy kerchief), and then on her father's canvases the teenage daughter appeared as a real beauty with bottomless eyes.

Being the same age as his daughters. Tretyakov Vera (in the marriage of Zealot) and Sashenka (in the marriage of Botkin), Sonya was very friendly with them. Vera Ziloti later recalled:

"Sonya was ugly, but with smart, energeticface, alive, funny and extraordinarily talented to painting ... In the 16-17 years Sonya ... became prettier, her hair grew. Her figure was long and thin. She danced beautifully. Her gaiety, wit and entrain attracted many admirers to her. "

Sonia was really very elegant - Repin,the student of Kramskoy, admired her figure, Albert Benois seriously courted her, but in his 30 years he seemed to be sixteen-year-old Sonya too "old." She had another fiancé - Sergei Botkin, a young doctor, a representative of the famous medical dynasty. Relatives solemnly noted the engagement of the young, Kramskoy on the joys of writing magnificent pair portraits of the bride and groom ...

Botkin Sergey

As they say, a person assumes, but Goddisposes. Sergei Botkin unexpectedly fell in love with his friend's bride Alexander Tretyakov. The engagement turned out to be dissolved, and soon Sasha Tretyakova married a former bridegroomfriend. Sonya Kramskoy found the strength to maintain a friendly relationship with her. But what happened for a long time left Sonya sad. Sophia saved the painting. The sixteen-year-old girl went to work with her head and began to demonstrate truly professional success.

"Between Sonia and her father was a rare friendship,which turned into mutual adoration, "wrote Ziloti. In 1884, Kramskoy, in order to distract Sonya from emotional torments, along with her daughter, goes on a foreign trip (at the same time, and his heart healed - he was already very sick). Traveling around France, Sophia was addicted to the picturesque etudes on the planet. A year after the trip, Kramskoy wrote: "My daughter, a well-known ... an anemone, begins to give me serious hopes that there is already some picturesque talent." Kramskoy understood that he was dying, and her daughter had not yet risen to her feet and had not found herself. Shortly before his death, Ivan Nikolayevich, worried about the fate of Sophia, said: "Girl, but how strong, as if already a master. I think sometimes, and it will be scary ... personal life threatens to turn into a tragedy. "


Sophia really could not recover fromhit, did not fall in love with anyone and did not marry. Only in adulthood, in 1901. when her father had not been alive for a long time, she married a St. Petersburg lawyer of Finnish origin, Georgy Junker.

Kramskoy, despite the simple origin (hewas the son of a clerk from the town of Ostrogozhsk), was received at the court and even became his own man, repeatedly performing portraits of the members of the imperial family (Alexander III was a great democrat and preferred to communicate with ordinary people, especially the talented, communion with the Romanov clan), gave lessons of painting to the daughters of the emperor. His own at the court became his children.

Sophia Kramskaya also performed a number of works,capturing the emperor, the Empress, their children, especially the Crown Prince, and other relatives. But almost nothing has survived. Something was destroyed or was lost in the years of the revolution, something from her own works was transferred to the Ostrogozhsky museum, to her father's homeland, along with his paintings, and when in 1942 a fire broke out in the museum, along with most of his collections .

Sophia was a recognized portraitist, she simplyshowered orders. Alas, the fate of many works that were in private hands, in houses and manors, destroyed during the revolution, also remained unknown.

Sophia Kramskoy repeatedly and with great successshe took part in various art exhibitions of the highest level - at the Academy of Arts, in the Society of Painters and Aqualists, in the art department of the All-Russian Fair in Nizhny Novgorod, etc. She was also known as a book illustrator, for example, making out the editions for the anniversary of Pushkin. Remarkable were her genre paintings.


After the marriage, Sophia Junker-Kramskoy helped her husband a lot, who collected materials about the Decembrists and prepared a study book about this period of history. The book was never published ...

Sophia Ivanovna's husband died in 1916. And soon other troubles began - the revolution, the Civil War, the death of the mother in 1919 ... But Sofya Ivanovna, who was already far beyond fifty, tried to adapt to the new life.

Since 1918, she worked in theartistic and restoration workshops Glavnauka. She, a deeply believing person, had to become the organizer of the antireligious museum of the Winter Palace and illustrate the "History of Religion" in the publishing house "Atheist". She, the daughter of Kramskoy, the famous master of religious painting, the author of the murals of the dome of the Cathedral of Christ the Savior and the great Christian paintings!

Sophia Ivanovna did not particularly hide her faith, likedid not hide the Christian desire to help his neighbor. In Leningrad, many of her acquaintances from the "past life" were tormented-Smolensk, maid of honor, just persons of noble birth. Deprived of everything - housing, property, service and whatever income, many literally starved. The artist's daughter helped them to get a job, even with the most modest salary, to get translations, lessons, a typewritten reprint, in order to somehow survive.

All this and attributed the elderly woman to the fault - and the fact that "it was very religious," and that which helped friends ...

Not so long ago the State TretyakovThe gallery requested material about S.I. Junker-Kramskoy from the closed archives. In response to the request came a copy of the personal file Junker-Kramskoy from the archive of the FSB. Sofya Junker-Kramskoy was arrested on December 25, 1930, charged under Article 58-II of the Criminal Code of the RSFSR in counter-revolutionary propaganda. It was attributed to the creation of a "counter-revolutionary grouping of the former nobility, whose goal was to hold their people in various Soviet institutions to serve to collect information about the mood ...". All who passed on the case, spoke about the religiousness of the artist, which complicated her situation.

By the way, in the materials of the case it was stated that SofiaIvanovna Junker-Kramskaya was born on August 21, 1867. (The date of birth indicated on the interrogation differs from the one that was known earlier - in 1866 - from the letters of the artist's father.) But we can assume that this was better known to the father than the investigator from the bodies ).

Kramskoy-Junker was sentenced as "alienelement "to 3 years of exile to Siberia, but because of a nervous shock she suffered a stroke. With severe paralysis, she was sent to the prison hospital of the DPZ. She was cured somehow and after four months she was sent to Irkutsk.

A semi-paralyzed woman reached Irkutsk,but three weeks later she was transferred to Kansk, a month later, with a worsening condition - to Krasnoyarsk. October 15, 1931 Junker-Kramskaya from the Krasnoyarsk hospital wrote a letter to Ekaterina Pavlovna Peshkova, who helped political prisoners. Sofya Ivanovna told about a serious illness, about two operations transferred during the exile. She tried to prove that she was doing good, that she always worked, despite her state of health, in Irkutsk as an illustrator of textbooks and collective farm magazines, in Kansk as a photographer and a retoucher in a local newspaper. In Krasnoyarsk, she suffered a second stroke, the left side of her body was taken away. Her request was to mitigate the fate: if you can not return home to Leningrad, then let her at least be left in Krasnoyarsk before the health amendment and be sure to provide work, because the right hand acts, is not paralyzed. "I write and portraits, posters, slogans, posters, signs, illustrations, I know photographic retouching, coloring of photos, languages, I can work, I love ... Elena Dmitrievna Stasova, my father, was so friendly with my father the late husband. You can also get information about the Kramskoy Museum, she and Comrade Lunacharsky ... "

At the end of the letter desperate lines: "I could make mistakes in my judgments, I might have misjudged something wrong, I could crookedly judge the state of things, but I did not commit any crime - and consciously so passionately loving my country, after the death of my husband (he was a Finnish citizen) changed its papers to the Russians, signing then the rejection of any claims to property. It was even funny to do otherwise. Help me! I wrote a request for pardoning M.I. Kalinin. I ask for your assistance. I will justify mercy, if to me it will be granted, I can assure you of this. I honestly worked for 40 years. It's hard last, maybe very short term - to feel - so punished ... I gathered my last strength to write to you all this ... "

On February 28, 1932, a motion was filed to review the Junker-Kramskoy case in connection with an incurable disease, and also because the exile "does not represent ... social danger."

March 25, 1932, Sofia Ivanovna returned to theLeningrad. July 31, 1932 Junker-Kramskoy wrote a letter of gratitude to HP. Peshkova, saying that he is going to work further, as far as the forces allow. In 1933 the artist died under strange circumstances. Allegedly, she pricked her finger when she was cleaning herring, and, according to her brother, "died of fish poison (??)". Rehabilitated her for lack of corpus delicti only in 1989.

The State Archives of the Russian Federation preserved her letter:

"Dear Ekaterina Pavlovna,
You will allow me to send you these few lines. I was released! If you only knew how deep my feelings and soul are full of deep gratitude. I do not know, I'm sorry, I do not know the right, do I really have to write about my gratitude, but I follow my inner need to do this ... You do not complain that I'm doing this, if it's not supposed, I do not know, but not to follow the soul of this need was impossible! I am here again, in Leningrad, where my long working life has passed - and now I may again, perhaps, be able to start working at least as much as my forces allow me, which will be restored in me with the knowledge of the opportunity to work again! I do not even know who to tell me about how I feel, and how grateful I am. But, thinking that all this has happened through the High Institution, which is the Representative, - I write to you. Well, it's not even for you, it's not necessary for anyone, let it not be accepted, let it not be - I still repeat: I am infinitely grateful that I believed both my sincere repentance and my honesty of the old social worker, and my ardent desire to iron out my work, whatever it may be, is an oversight and an unconscious error. And although I am very sick, of course, and very weak, but how much the forces that have allowed me will allow, I can use the remaining time to the inevitable end to rehabilitate my working name, both on my own and as Kramsky's daughter.
Once again, please forgive me if I do anything that goes beyond the bounds of what is allowed.
With deep respect,
Artist SI Junker-Kramskoy.
GARF. F. 8409. Op. 1. D. 772. S. 199. Autograph.

Details and interesting about the work of Ivan Kramskoy"Unknown" is said in a special issue of the radio "Echo of Moscow" with the deputy gene. director for scientific work of the State Tretyakov Gallery - where Kramskoy's work is kept by Tatyana Karpova.

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