MINNEAPOLIS (March 25, 2009) – On April 13, 2009, Russian Ambassador to the United States, His Excellency Sergey I. Kislyak will confer the Order of Friendship award on Bradford Shinkle, IV, Director Emeritus, at The Museum of Russian Art (TMORA) on behalf of Dmitry A. Medvedev, President of the Russian Federation.
Mr. Shinkle served as TMORA’s first president and director from the museum’s initial organization in 2000 until 2007. He established working relationships with The State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow and The State Russian Museum in St. Petersburg and was responsible for mounting the first American solo exhibition of the great Soviet painter Geli Korzhev in 2007. The Korzhev exhibition was named “Best Art Exhibition of the Year 2007” by Minneapolis/St. Paul magazine. Mr. Shinkle also directed the organization of exhibitions at leading American museums including the Smithsonian Institution, Guggenheim Museum and the St. Petersburg Museum of Fine Art (Florida).
The presidential decree establishing the Order of Friendship aims in part to recognize “exceptionally fruitful activities in mutual enrichment of cultures.” Current TMORA director Judi Dutcher said, “The award serves to recognize Mr. Shinkle’s extraordinary efforts in promoting Russian art and cultural cooperation between Russia and the United States.”
The Order of Friendship medal is one of the most prestigious awards a foreign citizen can receive from the Russian Federation. Recent American recipients include Raymond E. Johnson (founder, The Museum of Russian Art), Donald Kendall (CEO of PepsiCo), Van Cliburn (Pianist), James Wolfenson (President of the World Bank), and Captain Steven Smith (leader of U.S. Navy rescue of the Russian submarine Kursk lost at sea).
Mr. Johnson received the award from former President Vladimir V. Putin in January, 2006.