The picture “Seeing off a dead man” was created first after Perov returned from abroad. Art critics refer this canvas to the “mournful” scenes from all the many-sided art of the painter Vasily Perov.
Ostrosotsialnaya emotional picture is actually devoid of a dynamic plot – it is as if the moment, accidentally snatched from life. The feeling of pseudo-abundance of what is happening and gives rise to that sorrowful intonation, which is transmitted to the viewer.
A small family carries on the cemetery of the deceased. There is no broad procession, wailing old women, agitated people, wailing and tears, on the contrary, a poor peasant family escorts his loved one to the last journey, quietly, detachedly and humbly.
To translate the plot, the author chose a diagonal composition – it allows you to see all the participants and deprives the canvas of static character. The culminating center of the work can be called a drover with a hunched back, who sluggishly drives the horse. The thin horse of the last forces pulls the sled up the hill.
The glance moves to the sleigh, where it snatches a part of a simple wooden coffin, which the child embraces to support him. The widow of the deceased is sitting next to a closed coffin, and just grieved, her entire figure expresses powerlessness and grief. The cold, even icy landscape with low dark clouds completes the feeling of deep loneliness and hopelessness.
The picture has received great recognition from contemporaries. At one time, Stasov spoke positively of her, and for the first time the central exhibition hall gave a cash prize to the artist. Also, the canvas received recognition abroad.