#2 2006 (11)
150th ANNIVERSARY OF TRETYAKOV GALLERY
"He alone maintained the whole school of Russian painting. An unprecedented and grandiose deed!" In such words the Russian painter Ilya Repin expressed both his own attitude and that of his contemporaries towards the collecting activity of Pavel Mikhailovich Tretyakov. For more than 100 years the Gallery has proudly, and gratefully, born the name of its founder, who turned the institution into a prominent cultural monument to Russian art that has been appreciated by many generations.
The Tretyakov Gallery is one of the major museums of national art in Russia. Evolving from a private collection, today it boasts an art collection unique in its characteristics, diversity and scope. Its significance and its place in the contemporary art scene is defined by its special mission, one that combines two very important functions. One of them is traditional - to preserve, study and popularize the vast pool of works of Russian art of the i2th-20th centuries, assembled during the 150 years of the museum’s existence. Another function, a very important one today, is to address topical issues of the contemporary art scene.
150th ANNIVERSARY OF TRETYAKOV GALLERY
Masterpieces of the 14th through to 20th centuries from the Russian art collections of Moscow, St. Petersburg and regional museums of Russia May-August 2006
A major event marking the 150th anniversary of the Tretyakov Gallery which opens in the gallery on 24 May 2006, the exhibition “Russian Museums Congratulate the Tretyakov Gallery on its 150th Anniversary” collects works from the gallery’s long-term partners and friends. Co-sponsorship of the project was provided by the Severstal Group and Anatoly Novikov.
ART COLLECTORS AND PATRONS
Ilya Semenovich Ostroukhov was a leading collector in the Moscow art world of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. His collection, which later became the Icons and Paintings Museum, located in Ostroukhov's home on Trubnikovsky Pereulok near the Arbat, was referred to in a 1914 city-guide as one of Moscow's foremost attractions, and was frequented by art lovers, which gave considerable trouble, as well as pleasure, to its owner. Ostroukhov was by that time a well-known landscape artist, first actively involved in the Peredvizhniki (Wanderers) movement, who later rebelled against and broke with that group, creating in 1903 together with fellow malcontents who had split from the movement the Union of Russian Artists, concentrated primarily on the Moscow tradition of painting.
2006 was announced as the “Year of Russia in China”. These two countries have a long history of relations, and in the 21st century, they not only want to benefit from economic cooperation, but also aim to establish scientific and cultural contacts, and to study one another’s historical heritage. To celebrate the event, a rich cultural programme has been developed, including theatre performances, a film festival, various exhibitions and concerts.
The exhibition halls of the Tretyakov Gallery on Krymsky Val saw on April 24 the grand opening of the exhibition of French painting and sculpture from the unique and unrivalled Musée d’Orsay, that prides itself on its collection of art created between 1848 and 1914. The project is sponsored by Vneshtorgbank. The exhibition was held within the international programme dedicated to the 150th anniversary of the Tretyakov Gallery. “The French Project” is the second part of the gallery’s cooperation programme with the Musée d’Orsay; its first stage in Paris last year hosted a comprehensive and distinctive exhibition of Russian art of the second half of the 19th century.
The Museo Thyssen-Bomemisza, Madrid opened a major exhibition of the Russian avant-garde at the beginning of 2006 (February-May), the first of its kind in the Spanish capital. Entitled “Vanguardias rusas” and based on works from the Tretyakov Gallery, the Russian Museum, Russian regional museums and other public and private collections, the exhibition emphasized the interdisciplinary nature of Russian Modernism. Apart from major paintings, including, incidentally, Goncharova’s “Fishing” (1909) and Larionov’s “Baker” (1909) from the Museo Thyssen itself, the selection encompassed sculpture (including two Cubist pieces by Baranov-Rossine), book design (by Lissitzky and Stepanova), applied arts (including examples from the archive of the Decorative Institute, Leningrad, shown here for the first time), commercial design (such as movie posters by the Stenberg brothers), agit-propaganda (such as street art by Al’tman and posters by Klutsis), porcelain, textile designs and photography (including work by Ignatovich and Rodchenko), to mention just a fraction of this panoramic repertoire.
From 1923 until his death in 1964, Alexander Archipenko lived in the United States where he produced a large body of work. While Archipenko scholars have focused mainly on his early years in France and his contributions to Cubism, it is only now that researchers are examining the artist’s practice and the reception he received during this later period, and his place in the wider structure of avant-garde culture.
The history of Russia's oldest museum, now named the "Moscow Kremlin" Historical and Cultural Museum-Reserve has a long history. Its numerous collections originated in the 14th-early 15th centuries, during the reign of the first Grand Princes of Muscovy – Ivan Kalita, Dmitry Donskoi and Vasily I. In their wills, they bequeathed to their offspring golden caps, sabres, tableware and jewelled waist-belts, which soon came to be regarded by their contemporaries as ancestral relics that "protected the family" and symbolized its political power.
The artist’s individuality and the scale of his talent are determined by his selfless devotion to his vocation, not by any awards and ranks bestowed. Tsereteli’s exhibition in Moscow’s Manezh demonstrated once again the industry and the versatility of the talent of one the most controversial and famous artists in Russia.
From February 14 2006 to March 5 2006, the Academy of Arts hosted a solo exhibition of Efrem Ivanovich Zverkov, a People’s Artist of Russia, Vice-President of the Russian Academy of Arts (21 Prechistenka st., Moscow), and a laureate ofvarious state prizes, celebrating the painter’s 85th birthday. Although the works displayed were not numerous, they illustrated well the evolution of Zverkov’s artistic style as well as his artistic search and discoveries.
Viktor Yefimovich Tsigal’ (1916-2005), graphic artist, painter, sculptor, writer, and a veteran of World War II, died one year ago. The exhibition in the halls on Prechistenka Street became a tribute to the master’s memory, showing all the facets of his versatile work: sketches from life and large elaborate graphic compositions, painting and metallic sculptures, book illustrations and everyday objects transformed into true masterpieces of arts and crafts.
A personal exhibition of Max Beckmann (1884-1950), on show in the Old National Gallery in Berlin from December 2005 to March 2006, allowed many visitors to rediscover the universe of one of the brightest representatives of German art of the first half of the 20th century.
FRIENDS OF THE TRETYAKOV
Alexandre Gertsman, prominent New York art dealer, collector and founder and president of the International Foundation of Russian and Eastern European Art- INTART- has chronicled the post-Soviet “moment” through numerous museum and university exhibitions, cultural festivals, symposia, and lectures across the United States, Europe and Russia, with documented complementary books and catalogues of the artists represented. INTART offers a unique opportunity as a representative of both prominently established and lesser known, beginning Russian artists, whose collective experience invariably extracts varied response and discourse, promoting cross-cultural communication.