The grand exhibition “The Romanovs: imperial patrons of art” will be opened in the halls of the Art Academy museum from the 30th of October until the 8th of December, 2013. It was organized by the research museum of the Academy of Fine Arts with support from the Committee of foreign affairs of Saint-Petersburg.
The exhibition features few unique items. First of all, you will find the original charter of the Academy of Fine Arts signed by Catherine II. It was written on parchment and illuminated with watercolors drawings. The second most important exhibit is a set of preparatory drawings by Mihály Zichy for the coronation album of Alexander II. These drawings will be shown to the public for the first time. A number of restored monumental murals created by Giovanni Battista Scotti and Jacopo Ferarri are to become a prominent part of the exhibition. They were created for the Tauride Palace (Russian: Tavrichesky dvorets) under the direction of Luigi Rusca, the court architect of Alexander I. These three units have already made the exhibition “The Romanovs: royal patrons of art” a uniquely exceptional one.
Besides these items the exhibition features paintings, engravings and sculptures depicting all of the members of the Imperial dynasty. The exposition is organized chronologically, according to reigns. Portraits of the Imperial family members will be combined with watercolor sketches and etudes of the places where the Romanov family members used to live. Drawings by A. P. Losenko, landscape works by G. E. Novikov, lithographs by F. V. Perro with the prospects of Saint-Petersburg, graphics of M. A. Vrubel and I. Y. Bilibin and others are to help visitors feel the epoch of each reign and the personality development of the family members more profoundly. For the first time a monument of the grand duke Andrej Vladimirovich by the sculptor Paolo Trubetskoy will be shown. The architectural graphics will feature works of such architects as: Giacomo Quarenghi, Vincenzo Brenna, Carlo di Giovanni Rossi, Auguste de Montferrand, A. I. Stakenschneider , Harald Julius von Bosse and Maximilian von Messmacher.
The Blue Hall is dedicated to the epoch of Catherine II. During her reign special attention was paid to ancient history and architecture. Cork models copied after the famous ancient Greek and Roman buildings were created for her grandchildren to learn. Besides the models in the Blue Hall one will find mastered watercolors by Charles-Louis Clérisseau devoted to the grand monuments of Ancient times.
This exhibition we dedicated to those who were organizing a huge-scaled exhibition about the Romanov family which was supposed to open in 1913 but, unfortunately, had never been opened. We disclaim the whole restoration of that exhibition. However, some of the items which were to be displayed in 1913 can be found at the 2013 exposition “The Romanovs: imperial patrons of art”.