LATTRY Mikhail (Misha) was born in Odessa in 1875.  His Father, Dr Pelopid Lattry, was of Crimean Greek descent.

IKA UniHis grandfather IK Aivazovsky  was Armenian whose wife,  Julia Greives, was Scots.   A combination of  Russian,  Armenian, Scots & Greek descent in a cultural melting pot created a vibrant and colourful character.   He was first introduced to art through the paintings of his grandfather, who also supervised his artistic training.

Theodossia, a Greek colony in antiquity, ‘the gift of God’, renamed Feodosia in Soviet times,  was Aivazovsky’s birth-place and home.       




Screen Shot 2014-09-27 at 11.25.34                           The view from the terrace of the house that Aivazovsky built.  2005

Lattry became curator of the Aivazovsky gallery in 1910 which had been bequeathed to the town following his grandfather’s death in 1900.

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AivazFam291  Mischa Lattry was the eldest son of Elena the eldest of Aivazovsky’a  four daughters .   She is seen standing behind Aivazovsky in this photograph.

Misha was aged 10 when his father, Dr Pelopid Lattry, died.        Elena then married Anton Vladimirovich Rybitsky who, amongst other civil posts, was the governor of Yalta where Lattry spent his childhood.  Rybitsky proved to be a wonderful step-father to him and his younger brother, Alexander (Alia) and sister Sophia (Sonia).

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  In the photo on the right Misha is seen with his grandfather, Aivazovsky, and younger brother Alia Aivazovsky, Olga Sanford’s Uncles.   “Aivazovsky, having four daughters but no son wished to perpetuate his name through one of his grandsons.  He approached my older brother, Mischa.  But Mischa was already a rising artist in his own right and did not wish to have his name changed and, to Grandfather’s chagrin, refused.  The lot therefore fell to me.  On his last journey to St Petersburg he petitioned the Emperor Nicholas II and at the age of 16 I became Aivazovsky’.   (Alia Aivazovsky memoirs)


  His sister, Sophia (Sonia) married, secondly, Prince Iverico Mickeladze.

Her 2 daughters, seen here, were Olga (1900-55,  Mrs Stephen Sanford) and Gayane.






  His niece, Gayane (Princess Mickeladze) became an actress in England using the stage name of Miki Iveria.  She wrote an interesting   memoir which includes the families experiences during the Revolution.

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His Artzeulov cousins

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Artzeulov seen here in front of his ‘plane at Krinichki, the Mickeladze estate with Sonia, He was descended from Janna, Aivazovsky’s youngest daughter.          He returned to the USSR, survived and became well known in Soviet aviation.  An artist himself,  he became associated with the ‘Constructivist’ movement.    View post Artzeulov

   Alexei Hanzen

was another cousin, a marine painter, who worked in Ragusa (Dubrovnik).       View post  Alexei Hanzen→

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His wife

Ariadne Nikolaevna Arendt  (Toussia)

Screen Shot 2014-09-29 at 12.45.14  The wife of Misha Latri was Ariadna Nikolaevna Arendt,  the daughter of Nikolai Arendt, a well known Crimean doctor and philanthropist, and pioneer in aviation.   Ariadna was a professional singer, her talent being recognised by Sergei Rachmaninov.

Screen Shot 2014-10-03 at 10.51.12  Misha and Ariadna published together a popular children’s book “Light days of childhood”, she wrote the text and he illustrated it.  The printers mistakenly used Lattry’s sketches and not the finished pictures.  However they proved so popular that they remained unchanged and have been recently republished.

The niece of Ariadna – Ariadna Arendt the younger (Alia) –  was so inspired by Misha’s ceramics that she later   became a well known sculptress herself.   She wrote ‘ Lattry had a ceramic workshop, where I continuously observed the miraculous apparition of pots and vases upon the pottery wheel. When I looked into the kiln I saw the ceramic creations, searing almost transparent, of extraordinary beauty, yet when they cooled, covered in their coloured glazes they became even more beautiful. All this for me was like some divine magic, the same as that of painting appearing on a blank canvas.’

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The Australian descent.   From Alexandra

A full account was given by Andrew Miller at

Family trees

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