The artist is unknown
The portrait has long been considered the image of the jester of Peter I Ivan Alexandrovich Balakirev (1699–1763). With this definition, he entered the Russian Museum along with the whole famous collection of the princes of the Lobanov-Rostovsky. The idea of such an attribution, apparently, belonged to a famous artistic figure m. P. Botkin, who was an intermediary when buying a collection (Kosolapov 1995. With. 154–158). However, already in the first catalog of the Russian Museum, this definition was questioned (Wrangel 1904. With. 322–323). Later, the portrait was known by different names, and since the 1950s he was carefully called the “portrait of an old man in the Red Kaftan” of the work of an unknown artist. Half a century ago, an assumption appeared about the belonging of a picture of the brush g. Gzel, and recently, an attempt was made to see in the depicted associate of Peter I. AT. Bruce (Kovalenskaya 1960. With. 307–308; Hilimonchik 2002. With. 123–134).
Peter I. Time and environment. SPb, 2015. With. 90.