«Alexandre Benois remembers...»

30 September, Saturday
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Twenty watercolours from the artist's family collection (France) and the State museum Pavlovsk: the picturesque memories of St. Petersburg suburbs, especially Pavlovsk

Watercolours from the artist's family collection (France) and the State museum Pavlovsk

Alexandre Benois (1870, Saint Petersburg – 1960, Paris) – a prominent figure in the art of the Silver Age and man with many talents: he was a painter and a graphic artist, a scenographer and an art historian, an art critic and a memorialist.  

Benois's creative legacy is vast and diverse, his works are being displayed in the biggest Russian museums: the Hermitage, the Russian Museum, the Tretyakov Gallery as well as in private collections.

Twenty watercolours of the picturesque memories of St. Petersburg suburbs, especially Pavlovsk are being displayed at «Alexandre Benois remembers...» exhibition in the Horse Guards Room of the Pavlovsk Palace. Benois lived in Pavlovsk when he was just a five-year boy, and his father, the architect Nicholas Benois, had been building a wooden theatre building near the Musical railway station. He returned here as a youth, during his period of «romantic» feelings. In the 1920s, during the time of creation of the museum in the Pavlovsk Palace, he visited Pavlovsk as a renowned art historian.

Most watercolours were kept in the Benois family archive, in the album gifted by Benois to his wife Anna Karlovna Benois in 1943. Some paintings were drawn by the artist from life in the post-revolutionary years, other were drawn in France during the emigration years, using photographs.

These watercolours were kindly provided for the exhibition by the artist's grandson Dmitry Ivanovich Vyshnegradskii, currently residing in Paris. They are displayed for the first time. Such an exhibition in the Pavlovsk Palace would not have been possible without support from the Examination Cabinet «Honoré d'Urfé» (Cabinet d'expertise Honoré d'Urfé) and Mr. Roch de Coligny himself.

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