The Museum’s sculpture collection is broad enough though it’s also relatively specific. The first works entered were the casts of the antique and European sculpture of the 12th-19th centuries, as well as sculptures of the Ancient and the Near East, of the ancient Russian monumental and decorative plastics. This is a unique due to its completeness and quality collection which consists of over 3,000 stored items. Cast played in important role in the process of study of young sculptors, replicating “antiques” was obligatory for future artists of all qualifications.
The department of sculpture also holds some original works of antique, European and ancient Russian plastics. It is a fragment of a marble ancient Greek gravestone, the head of a man from Palmira originating from the 3d-4th centuries; three terracotta reliefs dating back to the end of the 18th century, sketch of a model of 1764 – brilliant works of French school masters. A certain interest represents also wooden gold-plated sculptures and fragments of the interior design (iconostasis) of the churches of Simeon and Anna, Savior in Sennaya in Saint Petersburg.
Other interesting items are terracotta reliefs of Baroque Italian masters from the collection of a Venetian cavalier A. Farsetti gifted by him to the Emperor Academy of Arts in the very beginning of the 19th century.
Like other departments of the Scientific-Research Museum of the Russian Academy of Arts the department of sculpture during the 18th-20th centuries was replenished with the best study works of the Academy’s scholars. These are plaster sketches made in the modeling class (for instance, the sketch of a model of 1769 of F.F. Shchedrin awarded with a small silver medal), sketches of the compositions (“Hanimedus with the Eagle” of N.S.Pimenov – praise of the AA’s Board ) and the programs (the earliest ones of 1772 made by М. I. Kozlovsky and F.F. Shchedrin with the theme “Izyaslav Mstislavovich and the Wars”); Beneficiaries’ works (in comparison to the study works are not the reliefs, but round sculptures, for instance “Prometeus” of F.G. Gordeyev,1769; “Bather” by N.A. Laveretsky, 1869); programs which were awarded with different titles. Among the latest ones – I.I. Podozyorov’s “Portrait of the sculptor N.S. Pimenov”, 1868 (the title of the academician) and also his “Eve”, 1881 (title of the professor).
The creative work of M.M Antokolsky is also well-covered, there are about forty of his works made in plaster which give us the opportunity to study the style of the author up to the last years of his life (Statue of Peter I, 1872; “Christ before the Public Court”, 1874; pattern of the gravestone of М. А. Obolenskaya, 1875; design of the monument to Katherine II in Vilno, 1900.).
Of a particular interest are also the reliefs of G.R. Zaleman (parts of the frieze “Olympic Games” for the Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow, wax; “Burial of Achilles” – relief on which the master was working the last years of his life).
The creative work of V.A. Beklemisheva is presented in its different aspects (genre group “Village Love”, 1896, portrait sculpture of P. I. Chaikovsky, busts of V,Ye. Makovsky, A.I. Kuinji, N.N. Dubovsky) and his student and wife Ye.I. Misheva.
Portrait statues of I.Ya. Ginzgurg present us the image of I.K. Aivazovsky, V.V.Vereshchagin, V.I. Surikov, N.P. Kondakov. M.A. Chizhov made a cast portrait of P.N. Gruzinsky, M.P. Botkin – the whole portrait gallery embodied outstanding representatives of the science and culture. The whole department is devoted to skilful works of Russian and foreign sculptors.
Soviet school of arts consists of study and graduate works made in the studios of А. Т. Matveyev, M.G. Manizer, V.V. Lishev, N.V. Tomsky andother sculptors; creative works of V.V. Lishev, М. А. Kerzin, M.G. Manizer, animalists G. I. Malyshev and V.Ya. Vorobyov. Busts of I.V. Krestovky made in the 1950s embodies the architects P.S. Smirnov and L.V. Rudnev, painters M.P. Boboshov and P.P. Belousov, fine art experts I.V. Brodsky and I.A. Bartnev.
A separate department is devoted to the collection of applied arts which comprises antique ceramics and medals. The first group is formed by red and black figure vessels and lamps, fragments of small plastic items of ancient Greek masters of the 6th-4th centuries BC. The most distinguishable is an attic black-figure crater which dates back to the 6th century BC.
Academic pectoral medals and casts are made by famous medalists: medal of the Emperor Academy of Arts of I.Ye.Yeger of silver dates back to the end of the 18th century; a big rewarding medal “For achievements in painting” of P.P. Utkin (made of silver by M.V. Kuchkin; the medal of the Emperor Academy of Arts “to the Dignified One” of P.P. Utkin (bronze, 1830s – 1840s); medal of the Emperor Academy of Arts “to the Successful One” made by A.P.Lyalin (1850s –1860s, bronze); silver pectoral signs of the graduates of the Emperor Academy of Arts of 1898 and 1913.