Private collection, Finland, from the early 20th century Acquired from the above by the present owner
Ust'-Koiva is a village by the banks of the River Chusovaya in the Urals and the site of important iron mines. In 1876 Vereshchagin received a commission from the Gornozavodskaya Railway Association to paint views along the Chusovaya, which as well as being an important trade route was also the planned location of the new Urals railway line connecting Perm with Ekaterinburg.
The canvas is unlined and is securely attached to what would appear to be the original keyed
wooden stretcher. This is ensuring a stable structural support. The canvas is inscribed on the
reverse. There are also traces of resin, staining and some minor historic reinforcement visible
on the reverse of the canvas.
The paint surface has an even varnish layer.
The painting has several areas of raised lines of craquelure within the sky, most notably
towards the upper left corner of the composition. These are stable. There are also raised
stretcher bar lines corresponding to the upper horizontal stretcher member. These are also
Inspection under ultraviolet light shows retouchings running along and close to the lower
horizontal framing edge, including an area within the rocks in the lower right corner and a
further area within the path above the centre left of the lower edge. There are also two small
retouchings within the lower centre of the sky and two further retouchings above the hills
towards the left edge and some further very small spots on the left and right edges.
The painting would therefore appear to be in good and stable condition. "This lot is offered for sale subject to Sotheby's Conditions of Business, which are available on request and printed in Sotheby's sale catalogues. The independent reports contained in this document are provided for prospective bidders' information only and without warranty by Sotheby's or the Seller."