Indeed, a number of Malevich’s paintings and drawings made their way from Russia to the Dutch capital during the early 20th century. In most cases it was local collectors deserting the country’s political turmoil for safer havens in Northern Europe. On other occasions it was the Russian Government who sold on works by the likes of Malevich and Kandinsky in order to deal with shortages of finance at that time.
There was a study sketch discovered in recent years which Malevich produced whilst planning for the very painting that you find here. The composition is virtually identical, perhaps one of several created by the artist before embarking on the final oil painting. There are a number of objects to be found here, all with symbolic relevance, one would immediately imagine. There are aspects here that remind us of Cubist still life paintings by the likes of Picasso, Braque and Gris. The gradients of colour were also used by Fernand Leger.
The gentleman is filled with gradients of colour, unlike many of his more simple abstract lines and shapes found in other work. He used this same colouring technique for his depictions of peasants, a theme he made use of on several different occasions.