The museum was founded in 1878. Its building is a jewel of Historicism in architecture. The museum keeps over 40 thousand works of applied art from antiquity to modern age.
The Museum of Applied Arts of the St. Petersburg Academy of Art and Design is one of a number of interesting and distinctive phenomena in Russia. The building was designed by M.Messmacher and spanned for eleven years. On 30 April 1896, the grand opening of the Museum was held in the presence of the Imperial family. Today the Museum collections number over 30.000 works of applied art from ancient times to the present. An extensive collection of Western European porcelain, Far Eastern ceramics, 16-18th century furniture are featured along with collections of glassware, and the best of students' work. These works reflect trends in Russian applied art over the years.