This charming watercolour shows a group of four Russian workmen in front of semi-derelict barracks. The expressions and gestures of the figures endow the work with life and character, as three men leaning on long staffs, dressed in heavy coats with high hats of fur or wool, turn to glare at a passing official in braided coat who gingerly raises his peaked cap in response. The work is both a delightful study of local costumes in nineteenth century Russia and a window into the life of the lower classes in the Empire at the time.
Original watercolour (23 x 29 cm). Mounted and framed.