143 years ago: Oriental artist and philosopher Nikolai Roerich was born

Alexander Krasavin/RIA Novosti
His works are acclaimed worldwide and his style is completely unique.

Archaeologist and artist Nikolai Roerich was born on Oct. 9, 1874. His art is diverse, from clerical Orthodox frescos and icons to paintings depicting folklore characters. He was also a theater artist and designer for some of Diaghilev’s ballets in Paris.

After the 1917 Revolution, Roerich - who lived in Finland at the time - couldn’t come back to Russia, so he moved to London before embarking on a huge art and lecture tour of the U.S. He eventually fulfilled his dream of traveling to Central Asia.

Enlightener and philosopher, Roerich was keen on Spiritism and together with his wife Yelena Roerich was creator of Agni Yoga spiritual teaching. He opposed the Soviet regime, and he echoed the themes of communism and Buddhism in his books.  

Now there are several museums dedicated to Roerich around the globe, while his paintings are exhibited in some of world’s most famous galleries.

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