The Museum of Russian Impressionism has recently opened its doors in the Bolshevik Business and Entertainment Center, housed in a historic former Moscow chocolate factory.
Over a 1,000 square meters of exhibition space, cinema, modern multimedia zone, educational facilities for children, café, book, and souvenir store will welcome visitors and help to create a joyful and meaningful experience of enjoying “the unexpected forms and fountain of colors”, as the artist Konstantin Korovin described Russian impressionism.
The founders were looking to create a cultural institution that would unite fascinating exhibitions with research, publishing and educational activities. A special emphasis is placed on studying the origin of the Impressionist movements in Russia, analyzing the works of the artists who formed its unique, local character, promoting Impressionism as an important artistic movement of late 19th and early 20th-century art both in Russia and abroad and popularizing little-known masters to the general public.
The difficult but exciting task of transforming the industrial heritage of a historic chocolate factory building into a world-class art institution was given to an award-winning, London-based architectural practice John McAslan + Partners. They came up with a four-storey high, round pavilion decorated with silver perforated metal that reflects the surrounding landscapes.
The exhibition spaces, amounting to over a 1,000 square meters is arranged here over three floors with the permanent collection on the ground floor and temporary exhibits on the upper floors. The museum plans to loan exhibitions of relevant works from the world’s leading museums and private collections each year.
The core of the new museum is a permanent exhibition based on masterpieces of notable Russian artists from the personal collection of its founder Boris Mints, who believes that the importance of Impressionism in Russian art is extremely undervalued. The work done by the team of the museum in the past two years has been recognized by the international art community, and it was included as a member of the prestigious International Council of Museums (ICOM).
The permanent collection is dedicated to the development of Russian impressionism over a century since 1870’s. It consists of more than 70 artworks of prominent Russian artists such as Konstantin Korovin, Igor Grabar, Konstantin Yuon, Petr Konchalovsky, Yuri Pimenov, as well as selected works by Boris Kustodiev and Valentin Serov.
Visitors will be able to learn about the different stages of the intricate process of making Impressionist painting from a multimedia installation by contemporary American artist Jean-Christophe Couet. With the help of innovative technology, he was able to disseminate some of the museum’s masterpieces into a multitude of brushstrokes on a massive screen.
The museum is planning to host personal exhibitions of various artists, as well as exhibitions centered around a certain theme. It opened with a retrospective of Arnold Lakhovsky, an artist revered by international art experts but almost unknown in Russia. Lakhovsky lived and worked in Russia, Palestine, France, USA, Scandinavia, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Italy. Therefore, his works have been dispersed in museums and private collections all over the world. The Museum of Russian Impressionism wants to ensure that an artist of Lakhovsky’s significance finds a prominent place in the anthology of Russian painting and is planning to exhibit more than 40 of his works, including architectural and natural landscapes, as well as portrait and genre paintings. Personal exhibitions of Valeriy Koshlyakov and Elena Kiseleva are also planned for 2016.
The Museum of Russian Impressionism
Leningradsky prospect 15, bld. 11.