July 01, 2011

Travel Notes



Returns home from Paris

A sweeping exhibit of Russia’s sacred art that made a splash at the Louvre last year has relocated to Moscow’s Tretyakov Gallery, where it will spend most of this summer. Holy Russia (svyatayarus.ru) guides the visitors from the early days after Russia’s baptism through its most valued art through the Petrine era, and includes 450 items from Russian and European museums.

Curators in Russia and France have already called this exhibition (carefully assembled for last year’s Year of Russia in France) “unprecedented,” because it brings together the oldest Russian artifacts of religious art from different corners of the world. Unfortunately, however, not all of the artworks from non-Russian collections shown at the Louvre made it to Moscow. And some, like Kommersant’s Sergei Khodnev, have complained about the Tretyakov Gallery’s poor presentation of the exhibit. Still, all the famous pieces —  from the fifteenth century Radzivill Chronicle to the thirteenth century Golden Doors of Suzdal’s Nativity of the Virgin Cathedral, to the mysterious twelfth century shoulder piece allegedly worn by Prince Andrei Bogolyubsky — together in one place, is probably a one-time-only occurrence and worth seeing if you are in Moscow before August 14. After Moscow, the exhibit will move to the Russian Museum in St. Petersburg.


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