The Hermitage, St. Petersburg City Hall, American Embassy

 

Russia - Hermitage, St. Petersburg City Hall, American Embassy

The State Hermitage Museum in Saint Petersburg, Russia is one of the largest museums in the world, with three million works of art  and one of the oldest art galleries and museums of human history and culture in the world. The vast Hermitage collections are displayed in six buildings, the main one being the Winter Palace which used to be the official residence of the Russian Tsars9-25-2012 Russia 6502 - Version 2

Catherine the Great started the famed collection in 1764 by purchasing more than 225 paintings from Johann Ernst Gotzkowsky, after bankruptcy in the year before. Gotzkowsky provided 225 paintings to the Russian crown, to be able satisfy to his obligations. Flemish and Dutch masters such as Dirck van Baburen, Hendrick van Balen, RembrandtRubens, Jacob Jordaens, Antoon van Dyck, Hendrick Goltzius, Frans Hals, Jan Steen and Gerrit van Honthorst formed the basis and the beginning of the collection in the Hermitage. Russian ambassadors in foreign capitals were commissioned to acquire the best collections offered for sale: Brühl’s collection in Saxony, Crozat’s in France, and the Walpole gallery inEngland. Catherine called her art gallery my hermitage, as very few people were allowed within to see its riches. In one of her letters she lamented that “only the mice and I can admire all this.” She also gave the name of the Hermitage to her private theatre, built nearby between 1783 and 1787.9-25-2012 Russia 6503 - Version 2

9-25-2012 Russia 6508 - Version 2

Michelangelo

The collection of the State Hermitage includes more than three million works of art and artefacts of the world culture.

9-25-2012 Russia 6516 - Version 2

Antonio Canova

It is said that if one spends 1 minute in front of each museum exibit, it would take 10 years to see them all.

9-25-2012 Russia 6524 - Version 2

Rembrandt – Danae

9-25-2012 Russia 6527 - Version 2

Rembrandt – Flora

9-25-2012 Russia 6530 - Version 2

Rembrandt – Return of the Prodigal Son

9-25-2012 Russia 6533

Botero – Still Life w Watermelon

9-25-2012 Russia 6538

Marquet – Notre Dame

9-25-2012 Russia 6540

Renior – Woman on a Stair

9-25-2012 Russia 6546

Cezanne – Blue Landscape

9-25-2012 Russia 6549

Van Gogh – Madame Trabuc

9-25-2012 Russia 6551

Renior – Ladies of Arles

9-25-2012 Russia 6556

Matisse – Lady on a Terrace

Matisse - Music

Matisse – Music

Russia - St. Petersburg, Hermitage

Matisse – Dance

Matisse - Young Woman in Blue Blouse

Matisse – Young Woman in Blue Blouse

9-25-2012 Russia 6566

Matisse – Woman in Green

Matisse - Family Portrait

Matisse – Family Portrait

Matisse - Conversation

Matisse – Conversation

9-25-2012 Russia 6574

Matisse – Portrait of the Artist’s Wife

9-25-2012 Russia 6576

Kees van Dongen – Lady in a Black Hat

9-25-2012 Russia 6578

Picasso – Violin and Guitar

9-25-2012 Russia 6504 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6511 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6513 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6514 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6519 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6537 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6553 - Version 2

Church of the Birth of St. John the Baptist (Chesme Church)
Built alongside the Chesme Palace as an Imperial posting house on the way to Tsarskoe Selo, this wedding-cake gothic building is one of the most unusual and attractive in St. Petersburg..

9-25-2012 Russia 6580

City Hall Building, St. Petersburg

St. Petersburg was named for its founder, Tsar Peter I, better known as Peter the Great. He was the grandson of Mikhail Romanov, founder of the Romanov dynasty that ruled Russia from 1613 until the Russian revolution in 1917. Peter’s rise to power was not as easy as most monarchs. He was the son of Tsar Alexis (1645-1676) and his second wife. In order to become Tsar, Peter had to deal with his older half sister Sophie who was ruling Russia. After building up loyalty among the army, Peter overthrew Sophie and sent her to a convent in Moscow in 1689. In May 1703 Peter laid the cornerstone of the fortress he named St. Petersburg, in honor of the guardian of the gates of heaven. (And, coincidentally, his name!) Peter built a shipyard across the Neva River from the fortress, giving Russia a European trading seaport and important access to the West. In 1712, Peter moved the capital from Moscow to St. Petersburg and required all of the aristocracy to (1) move there, (2) build lavish homes for themselves, and most importantly, (3) contribute to paying for the construction of the government buildings there. Peter had studied fortification and shipbuilding in Western Europe and greatly influenced the design of the city with his ideas.City Hall of St. Petersburg

9-25-2012 Russia 6583 - Version 2

City Hall from the inside looking out.

9-25-2012 Russia 6589 - Version 2

Russian interpreter.

9-25-2012 Russia 6607 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6609

Portrait of Lenin in City Hall.

9-25-2012 Russia 6610 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6612 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6613 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6615 9-25-2012 Russia 6617

Lenin’s office is kept as it was when he last left it…this is the desk of his admin, right out side his door.

9-25-2012 Russia 6619 - Version 2

Lenin had a cot in room around the corner of his office that use to catch some rest.

9-25-2012 Russia 6626

Lenin’s desk as he left it.

9-25-2012 Russia 6627 9-25-2012 Russia 6629 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6630 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6632 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6634 9-25-2012 Russia 6637 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6641 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6642 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6643 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6644 - Version 2

This reception at the American Embassy on September 11th began with a moment of remembrance of that fateful day.  What am amazing feeling it was to be in Russia and paying tribute to 9/11 – 11 time zones from home where the news was no doubt all about remembrance.

9-25-2012 Russia 6647 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6648 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6649 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6651 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6655 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6658 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6660 - Version 2 9-25-2012 Russia 6661 9-25-2012 Russia 6662 - Version 2

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>