About the film
About the painting
In this movie, Russian Symbolist painter Mikhail Vrubel’s The Demon is in the background in a gallery as Louis de Pointe du Lac (Brad Pitt) and Armand (Antonio Banderas) stroll through.
While in Kiev, Vrubel started painting sketches and watercolours illustrating the Demon, a long Romantic poem by Mikhail Lermontov. The poem described the carnal passion of “”an eternal nihilistic spirit”” to a Georgian girl Tamara.
At the end he had a severe nervous breakdown and was hospitalized in a mental clinic. Vrubel’s mental illness was initiated or complicated by tertiary syphilis. In 1906, overpowered by mental disease and approaching blindness, he ceased painting. He died on April 14, 1910.
Unfortunately the Demon, like other Vrubel’s works, doesn’t look as it did when it was painted, as the artist added bronze powder to his oils in order to achieve particularly luminous, glistening effects.