The restoration of the Greek Gallery at Gatchina is now underway. Modern-day masters will recreate the elegant 18th-century gallery based on drawings, photographs and watercolours which have survived.
In its heyday before the Revolution, the Greek Gallery was illuminated thanks to the light-orange hues of the walls and the orange-coloured curtains of the semicircular windows. This was intensified by the rays of sunshine coming in through the large windows that ran the entire length of the gallery.
The gallery included the furnishings and decor details associated with the art of ancient Greece. The walls were adorned with reliefs of dancing bacchantes and medallions showing profiles of ancient heroes, moulded bracket carried marble busts of Roman emperors and philosophers and marble statues of antique gods and goddesses stood opposite the windows.
Four large canvases by Hubert Robert depicted architectural sights of ancient Rome. The Greek Gallery completed by Vincenzo Brenna in the 1790s terminated the ceremonial palatial apartments retaining the 18th-century decorations.
© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 04 April, 2012