Not everyone probably knows that this picture has a peculiar antonym - “Misty morning in Italy”, written in 1864. The artist loved in conversation to compare these canvases, contrasting two cardinal points, two radically different moods of the landscape: peaceful, idyllic, on the one hand, and terrible, raging, on the other.
Aivazovsky in "The Storm on the Ice Ocean" to give the landscape more realism changes the usual color scheme: the sea instead of blue begins to cast a dark emerald hue. He is echoed by the lead color of the sky, which, as often happens in Aivazovsky’s paintings, is almost merged with the water surface. It seems that a little more - and you will feel the cold breath of the Arctic Ocean! And what a contrast the warm sea in Italy looks, painted with the gentle pink sun!
Separately, let's say about the plot of the picture. It depicts not only the raging sea (a popular, in general, topic that Dutch artists of the 17th century managed to address), but also the salvation of man. This is a rather rare case in the history of painting, because before that, artists, depicting a shipwreck, sought to focus on the terrifying consequences of the disaster: wreckage of a ship, disfigured corpses.
Aivazovsky was one of the first to depict the struggle of man with the water element, thereby significantly expanding the thematic arsenal of marine painters. All further creative work of the artist, one way or another, will seek to solve the problem posed - of course, in favor of the fearless person in the boat. And already in The Tempest on the Arctic Ocean, the artist, despite his desire to endure the painting in terrible tones a la Ninth Wave, gives the daredevil hope for salvation in the form of the rays of the sun starting to glimpse through heavy clouds.
Raphael Sistine Madonna