Vassili Surikov (1849 - 1916) was born in Siberia. In 1868 he set out for St. Petersburg on horseback to join the Academy. The journey took him a year. On his way to St. Petersburg V.Surikov made frequent stops in ancient towns of Russia. He was greatly impressed by Moscow and it determined Surikov's way of life and work. V.Surikov was the first Russian painter to turn to the past of Russia for the subject of his works. V.Surikov expressed the past against the background of ordinary people. Surikov's masterpiece "Boyarinja Morozova" (1884) is set in the streets of medieval Moscow. Enormous in size and scale the canvas depicts the persecution of the "old believers" by patriarch Nikon. The painting is very vivid and full of movement. The dynamism of the painting can be traced to the ancient Russian art. Surikov used a colourful palette. The colours and the surface rhythm make the paintig alive. V.Surikov excerted a great influence on all the Russian artists of his time.