080501-098b
Prokudin-Gorskii, Sergei Mikhailovich. Family in Yurt, Central Asia. 1 negative (3 frames) : glass, b&w, three-color separation. Library of Congress, Prokudin-Gorskii Collection.

The Lost Empire: Photographer to the Tsar

Lower Gallery

Visitor’s Guide

The remarkable photographs of Sergei Prokudin-Gorskii offer a haunting glimpse into a lost world—
the Russian Empire on the eve of World War I and before the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917.  With the support of Tsar Nicholas II, Prokudin-Gorskii traveled throughout the vast reaches of the Russian Empire, carefully documenting its people, architecture, landscape and industry.  Using an innovative camera of his own design, Prokudin-Gorskii captured subjects in vivid color.  TMORA presents 23 stunning images, borrowed from the Library of Congress, in a custom-designed light installation.

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Aleksandr Mikhailovich Gerasimov After The Rain Oil on Canvas 22 1 2 x 23 3 8
Aleksandr Mikhailovich Gerasimov. After the Rain. 1930s, Oil on Canvas. Private American Collection.

Russian Impressionism: On the Edge of Soviet Art

Main and Mezzanine Galleries

This exhibit of 54 fine art paintings traces the historical evolution and influence of impressionist painting from its roots in 19th century France to its successful transplantation in pre-Revolutionary Russia. Although impressionism was routinely suppressed by the Communist Party as a foreign-inspired and socially decadent art form for over six decades, Russian artists never abandoned their affection for and use of impressionist brush techniques and color pallet. Impressionism survived behind closed doors and re-emerged as a dynamic and beloved art form that is uniquely Russian.

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Malle Leis. Untitled. Serigraph.

Printmaking from Soviet Estonia

Prints from the Zimmerli Museum and Rutgers University in the Lower Gallery

“Art was a controlled substance in Russia and the Communist-bloc countries of Eastern Europe during much of the Soviet era (1922-91). While government censors tried to restrict what artists painted or sculpted – especially anything with a religious or political theme – they largely ignored etchings, lithographs and other prints because they were considered minor art forms. A new show of 41 Soviet-era Estonian prints, on loan from Rutgers University, suggests that a lot of social commentary slipped under the official radar in those days. The Rutgers collection specializes in “nonconformist” art, meaning pieces that ignored or defied the official party line.”  (Mary Abbe, Star Tribune)

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Geli Korzhev Raising the Banner
Geli Korzhev. Triptych - Communists: Raising the Banner. 1957-1960, Oil on Canvas. 60 7/8 x 113 1/8 in. The State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia.

Raising the Banner: The Art of Geli Korzhev

61 paintings including 16 works from the State Russian Museum and the Tretyakov Galleryin the Main, Mezzanine, and Lower Galleries

Visitor’s Guide
Geli Mikhailovich Korzhev 
(1925 – ) is recognized by contemporary Russian art historians as one of the most influential painters of the second half of the 20th century; his work has influenced the style and subjects of two generations of post-WWII Russian artists. In collaboration with curators at the State Russian Museum (St. Petersburg) and the State Tretyakov Gallery (Moscow), TMORA will present an exclusive retrospective exhibition of 61 paintings that includes exceptional examples of Korzhev’s paintings from all segments of his remarkable career. 16 of the paintings are on loan to TMORA from the two largest Russian national museums. TMORA will dedicate its entire exhibition facility to this exhibition that represents the first solo exhibition for a single artist at the museum. This exhibition includes representative examples of works from every stage of Korzhev’s artistic life.

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Andrew More Photograph Winter Palace
View of Palace Square through the General Staff Headquarters. Andrew Moore.

Russia: A Photographic Journey

The Art of Andrew Moore in the Lower Gallery

Visitor’s Guide

“The Museum of Russian Art has a fascinating show of large-scale photos of contemporary Russia by Andrew L. Moore of New York. Moore has a fabulous eye for design and detail, and seems to have had unparalleled access to everything from private apartments in St. Petersburg, to costume closets at the Kirov Ballet, to abandoned missile sites in remote villages. His stunning color photos… document a country undergoing dramatic economic and political changes.”  (Mary Abbe, Star Tribune)

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Bread Basket
Nikolai Ippolitovich Obrynba. Before the Storm, 1957. Oil on canvas. Private American Collection.

Soviet Bread Basket

47 paintings, Main and Mezzanine Galleries

An exhibition of approximately 50 paintings featuring Russian landscape scenes and images of Soviet agriculture. The Virgin Lands project, communal farming and the social significance of agricultural development in Russia will be presented in a visual tour of all the varied geographical regions of the former Soviet Union.

A Map of Soviet Land Usage provides some background material for the exhibition.

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Works on Paper Sports
Exhibition Photograph by Don Wang.

Works on Paper

14 works in the Fireside Gallery

The masterful oil paintings that are included in the Johnson Collection of Russian and Soviet art are only one dimension of the consummate artistic training and skills developed by generations of Russian artists. Works on paper represent another facet of Russian visual artistry. Russian art institutes provided rigorous training in drawing and composition through which individual artists became attracted to the media of graphite, charcoal, pastel and conte’ crayon. Alternatively, various artists became enamored by the fluid qualities provided by watercolor and gouache as well as by the spontaneous painting techniques required to effectively utilize these materials. The diversity that is inherent to 20th century Russian art is displayed throughout this exhibition of works on paper.

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Colors of Russian Winter Feature Photo
Nikolai Alekseevich Abramov. April in the Motherland of V.I. Lenin, 1969. Oil on canvas. Private American Collection.

Colors of a Russian Winter

49 paintings in the Main and Mezzanine Galleries

“Colors of a Russian Winter, an exhibit featuring 52 colorful paintings, presents a cross-section of winter landscapes and activities that exist within Russia, from the coastal to the desert climates. “The exhibit is structured to bring life and color to the cold season, and to dispel the notion that winter in Russia is simply a panorama of white ice and snow,” says Bradford Shinkle, IV, president and director of TMORA. Winters have historical significance to the country in terms of the development of the Russian psychic character and in shaping major events. Historians credit the severity of the winter season for helping the Russians defeat both the invasions of Napoleon and Hitler. Several paintings included in the exhibit refer to these events, in addition to happy images of sledding, skiing and other winter activities.”  (Minnesota Monthly)

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Lacquer Masterpieces Photo
Exhibition Photograph by Don Wang.

Masterpieces of Russian Lacquer Art

In the Fireside Gallery

An exhibition of important works of miniature lacquer art drawn from the collections of Russian and American museums and the Lucy Maxym Collection.
Visitor’s Guide

“The Museum of Russian Art has announced the arrival of 38 additional Russian lacquer art items on loan from two Moscow museums. The hand-painted items feature miniature scenes from Russian historical legends, myths and fairytales. They are on display through Dec. 30 as part of the museum’s “Masterpieces of Russian Lacquer Art” exhibition, which opened Oct. 5.  The loaned items from the Russian museums were delayed because of a Russian Ministry of Culture’s request for additional documentation following the recent unexplained disappearances of millions of dollars worth of art from the famous Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia.  “We sympathize with the Russian museum authorities and support their efforts to ensure the security of their country’s artistic treasures,” said Bradford Shinkle, IV.”  (Southwest Journal)

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