Peter the Great meditating the Idea of building St. Petersburg at the Shore of the Baltic Sea

Artist: Alexandre Benois
Original name: Петр Великий думающий о строительстве Санкт-Петербурга
Style: Art Nouveau (Modern)
Genre: history painting
Date: 1916
Copyright: Public domain US

In this piece, Peter the Great stands at the shore of the Baltic Sea, meditating on the idea of building St. Petersburg on its shores. The wind blows strongly in face, yet he stands firm, holding steady against the wind. This is perhaps illustrative of his strength of conviction, and evidence of his greatness as a ruler. The waves threaten to crash upon his feet, but his stance is strong and unwavering. His observers look like the wind will knock them over at any moment, perhaps not because they can’t hold themselves up, but because their convictions are not a strong as Peter’s.