The famous Pushkin Museum in Moscow

Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow

Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow ©Matt Chotin

The Pushkin Museum in Moscow is immeasurably rich.

In Russia only the worldwide famous Hermitage Museum of Sankt Petersburg has a larger collection.

Pushkin has nothing to do with the museum. His name was given to the museum in 1937, at the 100th anniversary of the death of the poet.

The construction of the Pushkin Museum began in 1898, and it was inaugurated in 1912 being named after Tzar Alexander III.


The collection of the museum consisted of private donations and besides of a total of two really valuable objects had a collection of classical plaster copies.

Pushkin Museum in Moscow

Pushkin Museum in Moscow ©Cea./Flick

The Western Art collection of the Museum

When Moscow became the capital city instead of Sankt Petersburg in 1948 the Soviet government brought thousands of pieces from the collection of the Hermitage in the Moscow Museum, these works formed the core of the Western art collection. The most important western European works including Impressionist and Post-Impressionist painters as Van Gogh, Gauguin, Picasso, Matisse, Monet, Manet and Dufrenoy arrived to the museum, which is specialized in Western art, beginning with the year 1923 from different Russian public and private collections.

Russian collectors in the 19th-20th centuries

The impressionist and post-impressionist collection of the Hermitage in St. Peterrsburg and the Pushkin Museum in Moscow are worldwide famous and extremely wealthy. This is mainly because the Russian collectors at the end of the 19th century and at the beginning of the 20th century observed contemporary artists of those times much earlier than others in the world. The pictures purchased at that time for private collections were given to the state museum after the revolution.

Art collection of the Pushkin Museum

Art collection of the Pushkin Museum ©Aleksandr Zykov/Flick

The growth of the collections during the Soviet Union

Later, during the Soviet Union many owners donated their small private collections assembled with great expertise to the Pushkin Museum. One of the reasons was their fear that the heirs will smash the collections. Besides of this in the Soviet times the museums usually had enough money to purchase the items they considered to be important.

The buildings of the Pushkin Museum

The Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts currently operates in six buildings. The main house and other three are on the Volhonka Street. In front of the Church of Christ the Redeemer lays the museum of the plaster copies, and the Sviatoslav Richter memorial museum is located in different parts of the city. There are also some expansion plans of the museum, which would increase the actual size with 400% attaching several adjacent small palaces to the four buildings in the Volhonka Street.

Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow

The Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow ©Matt Chotin


Leave a Reply