Picks of the Week

Originally published in The Moscow Times on April 14, 2000

It's just a touch of lip to cheek, but the kiss the curly haired shepherd plants on his sweetheart's blushing face represents the height of sensuality.

And that's just the beginning.

The Dom Nashchokina Gallery's "Paintings From the Romantic Age" is full of idyllic scenes by leading Russian Romantic painters from the first half of the 19th century f painters like Fyodor Moller, who painted the affectionate shephard in "The Kiss." All of the works are from St. Petersburg's Russian Museum.

The show, perfect for the start of spring when flora, fauna and passions alike rise from their winter's hibernation, is scheduled to run through May 5.

The gallery's first room is deceptive in its seriousness. Its lifelike portraits of people wearing grave expressions stare down at arriving visitors, but their disposition is hardly indicative of what is to follow: a walk on seashores and beaches by moonlight, the work of Ivan Aivazovsky, the renowned painter famous for his radiant seascapes and scenes of life by the sea.

Aivazovsky is also a master of painting the moon. Half-hidden in his "View of Odessa on a…

Read the full text at The Moscow Times.