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The State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow held a retrospective exhibition of over 120 works by one of Russia’s most famous landscape artists, Arkhip Kuindzhi. This included "Ai-Petri. Crimea," on loan from St. Petersburg’s State Russian Museum. The painting depicted St. Peter mountain (near Yalta), one of the foggiest places in Ukraine. A 31-year-old man, who had previously been detained for drug possession, walked up to the painting, took it off the wall, and walked out the exhibition hall with it swinging from his right hand. Security camera footage showed that the people standing next to him seemed stunned, but no one else appeared to notice. The painting was subsequently found at a construction site near Moscow. A Pontic Greek from Mariupol, in the eastern Ukraine, his shoemaker father and his mother died when he was 6. In 1n 1855, when he was 13, he walked 427 km to Feodosiia in Crimea, where he mixed paints for the Armenian painter Hovhannes Aivazian (better known as the prolofic seascape painter Ivan Konstantinovich Aivazovsk), and then worked as a retoucher in a photography studio in Taganrog, Russia,near the mouth of the Don river. After moving to St. Petersburg in 1868 to study at the Imperial Academy of Arts he emerged as an important painter. Pavel Mikhaylovich Tretyakov, a Moscow banker, began collecting works from the society of circulating art exhibitions (Tovarishchestvo peredvizhnyh hudozhestvennyh vystavok, or "Peredvizhniki" [Wanderers]) which Kuindzhi had helped found in 1870; Kuindzhi's painting "On the Valaam Island" was the 1st acquisition for his gallery.
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