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Sunday, 22 March 2015
Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich and the Fine Arts Museum in Moscow
Topic: Sergei Alexandrovich GD


Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich in the study of fine arts at Moscow University
 
In order to organize a museum affiliated to Moscow University, a special Committee for the Establishment of the Alexander III Museum of Fine Arts started to function in 1898. From the moment the Committee was inaugurated until his assassination in February 1905, it was chaired by Moscow Governor-General Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich (1857-1905). As early as 1854, he came forward as a patron of the University's museum. His report delivered in July 1895 announced the decision taken by Nicholas II to delay the stone-laying ceremony for the building of the Industrial and Technical Training School in Kolmazh Court – planned as a commemoration of the Silver Jubilee of Alexander II's accession, so as to clear the site for the new museum. In 1898 the whole site was set aside for the new construction project.

Castings of ancient Oriental artifacts, preserved in various museums worldwide, from the 1890s were collected for the Alexander III Fine Arts Museum (the original name for the present Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts) in Moscow on the basis of the cabinet of fine arts at the Lomonosov Moscow State University. Chairman of the committee for arranging the museum was the Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich. Many other honorary members of the Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society helped arrange the museum as well. The Holy Tsar Nicholas II was the museum’s personal patron and himself assigned 200,000 rubles. The Greek Courtyard (Pantheon Hall) one of the largest and most beautiful galleries in the museum, was built on the funds of Sergei Alexandrovich and his brother, Paul Alexandrovich, and named after the latter’s spouse, Grand Duchess Alexandra Georgievna (formerly Greek Princess: 1870-1891).

Professor Ivan Tsvetayev often appealed to Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich for help in collection of castings, and the latter’s intercession in this area was more efficient than that of the chancellor of the university. The Grand Duke approved this idea and furthered the collection of copies of masterpieces of Antiquity, Middle Ages and Modern time from all over the world within the new museum. As an embodiment of this idea, the museum acquired castings of ancient Oriental artifacts. Their quality amazes specialists to this day. Significantly, a casting is a mechanical reproduction of the original, and there is no influence from a copyist. Plaster was made to look like marble, bronze or wood, as the original. The discoveries were made by English and French archaeologists in the mid-19th century. These artifacts were removed in quite a barbaric way: they were simply cut out of the palace walls. They were transported on ships—many of which sank because of overloading. Castings of the artifacts were made of plaster; Tsvetayev himself determined their age to be 50 years. At the present time, many of the castings are restored.

Since 1997, the major part of the castings collection of the ancient Oriental arts has been exhibited at the Ivan Tsvetayev Educational Art Museum at the Russian State University for the Humanities, as well as the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow. 
 
© Pravoslavie Rus, Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts and Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 22 March, 2015
 

 

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 3:39 AM EDT
Updated: Sunday, 22 March 2015 3:04 AM EDT
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Wednesday, 11 February 2015
Tsarskoye Selo to Host Roundtable Discussion on Romanov Portraits
Topic: Sergei Alexandrovich GD


Two unique portraits of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich and Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna  will be the subject of a roundtable discussion at Tsarskoye Selo on February 18th. The event will coincide with the 110th anniversary of the assassination of Moscow Governor-General (1891-1904), commander of the Moscow Military District, Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich, which took place on February 17, 1905. 

The portrait of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich is by Kirill Vikentievich Lemokh (from the collection of Espoo). The portrait of Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna by François Flameng is from the collection of the Tsarskoye Selo State Museum-Preserve. The portrait was presented to the Tsarskoye Selo State Museum-Preserve by Michael Ilyinsky, a descendant of Grand Duke Dmitri Pavlovich in 2013. Both artists devoted close attention in these intimate portraits, both of which were painted at Ilyinskoe, the grand ducal couples 2,400-acre country estate forty miles west of Moscow on the left bank of the Moskva River, that he inherited from his mother. 

Karl Lemokh was a member of the Academy of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg, and curator of the Russian Museum. He accepted an invitation to give private drawing lessons to the children of future Tsar Alexander III and continued to do so for many years. Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna turned out to be his best student there, and retained an interest in art for the rest of her life. François Flameng, was a very successful French painter during the last quarter of the 19th century and the first quarter of the 20th. He was one of the founders of salon portraiture, which included two portraits of Princess Zinaida Yusupova at Arkhangelskoye.
 

These beautiful works of art of the late 19th century, each hold a charming story. Lemokh’s portrait of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich (1886) was commissioned as a "little surprise" from the Grand Duke for his wife’s birthday, while Flameng’s portrait of Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna (1894) was commissioned by the Grand Duke for the 10th anniversary of their wedding. 

Two Portraits will bring together Romanov experts and historians from Moscow and St. Petersburg in the Semi-Circular Hall of the Alexander Palace. Among the guests will be members of the Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society (IOPS), of whom the grand ducal couple both served as president. Guests will table papers devoted to the history of these and other portraits of Sergei Alexandrovich and Elizabeth Feodorovna from domestic and overseas collections. Also on the agenda will be a discussion on the current state of the Ilinskoye estate and its status as an historic site.  

A special theme of the Round Table will be the tragic days of 1905 and the commemoration by the Russian Orthodox Church of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich as a distinguished member of the Imperial family. The round table will also honour the merit and works of the grand ducal couple for the benefit of the Motherland. 

Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich - served as Moscow Governor-General, founder of museums, philanthropist, a staunch defender of the Russian state, the hero of the Russian-Turkish war of 1877-1878, Commander of the Life Guards Regiment. Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich, was a founding member and served as the first President of IOPS from April 24, 1889-1905, while his wife, Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna, served as the second President of IOPS from 1905-1917.

Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna’s memory is recalled not only in Russia, but throughout Europe. As the wife of the governor-general of Moscow, she led more than 60 public and charitable organizations. She made a particularly significant contribution to charity and assistance to soldiers on the fronts of the Russian-Japanese War and the First World War, as well as their families, widows and orphans. After the tragic death of her husband in 1905, Elizabeth Feodorovna went on the path of service to God and helping those in need. She was later canonized as a saint by the Russian Orthodox Church. 

The event is a joint effort between the Elisabeth Sergius Educational Society (Moscow) and the Tsarskoye Selo State Museum-Preserve.
 
For more information on the portrait of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich by Karl Lemokh, please refer to the following article: 

Portrait of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich Presented at State Historical Museum 

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 11 February, 2015
 

 

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 5:42 AM EST
Updated: Wednesday, 11 February 2015 5:52 AM EST
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Sunday, 1 February 2015
Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich and His Service to Moscow
Topic: Sergei Alexandrovich GD


The Great Service to Moscow exhibition opened on January 29, 2015, at the V. A. Tropinin Museum in Moscow.

The exhibition marks the 110th anniversary of the assassination of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich, and to the 150th anniversary of the birth of the Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna. This exhibition is a continuation of The History of the Romanov Dynasty in Russia theme, launched in 2013 dedicated to the 400th anniversary of the Romanov dynasty exhibition project, and then, in 2014, with the White Angel of Zamoskvorechye exhibition.

The exhibition consists of several sections. It describes the childhood and adolescent years of Hessen’s Princess Ella and her years with Grand Duke Sergei, the history of their acquaintance, a marriage, and the first years of their family life in Russia, the appointment of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich governor-general of Moscow and commander of the Moscow Military District. Precisely in Moscow the couple became famous as the builders, decorators, educators, philanthropists and benefactors, contributing in many committees and scientific societies. Due to their efforts Moscow will be granted new museums - the Historical and the Museum of Fine Arts named after Emperor Alexander III (currently, a world-famous Museum of Fine Arts named after A. S. Pushkin), Moscow Art Theatre will opens its doors, a new building of the Moscow Conservatory will be erected, and the Cathedral of the Assumption in Kremlin will be restored. Grand-ducal pair will serve Moscow at the vast field of charity. Guests of the exhibition will find out about the tragic death of the Grand Duke and his wife, who founded the Martha and Mary Convent in Moscow.

The exhibition presents photographs and posters from the private collection with images of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich and Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna.

The exhibition runs until March 16, 2015 at the V. A. Tropinin  Museum in Moscow. 
 
© Presidential Library and Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 01 February, 2015
 

 

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 10:32 AM EST
Updated: Sunday, 1 February 2015 12:02 PM EST
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Wednesday, 5 February 2014
Portrait of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich Presented at State Historical Museum
Topic: Sergei Alexandrovich GD


Portrait of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich by Karl Lemokh
 
The exhibition The Romanovs: Portrait of a Dynasty, will close on February 10th at the State Historical Museum in Moscow, however, one final interesting touch to compliment the exhibit in its final week is a unique portrait of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich (1857-1905). 

The small portrait is slightly larger than the album the Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich is reading at his summer residence at Ilyinskoe. The portrait was painted in 1886 and was intended, according to historians, as a gift to his wife, the Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna. The portrait was painted by the Russian painter of German origin Karl Lemokh (1841-1910). A graduate of the Academy of Arts, he was one of the founders of the Wanderers. His works can be seen in the Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow and the Russian Museum in St. Petersburg.

Lemokh, received the Orthodox name of Cyril at the Russian Court of. He accepted an invitation to give private lessons in drawing and painting to the children of the Emperor Alexander III, including His Imperial Highness the Heir Tsarevich and Grand Duke Nicholas Alexandrovich, the eldest son of Alexander III, the last Russian Emperor Nicholas II. However, his most talented pupil was the younger sister of Nicholas,  Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna. Olga took a serious interest in painting, one that she enjoyed for the rest of her life. During her lifetime, she painted more than 2,000 paintings, and today are highly sought after by collectors.

Lemokh's portrait of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich will be on display at the State Historical Museum until February 10, along with other paintings and photographic portraits of the imperial family during the final days of the exhibition The Romanovs. Portrait of a Dynasty. During my visit to Moscow in October 2013, I had the opportunity to visit this exhibit. The collection of paintings and photographs was superb! Many were new even to me, and the exhibit ranks among the finest that I have seen to date on the Romanov dynasty.
 
For more information on this exhibition, please refer to the following link; 
 
Romanov Dynasty Through the Eyes of Russian Artists + VIDEO

Exhibition: The Romanov's: Portrait of a Dynasty

New Portrait of Grand Duchess Olga Alexandrovna

 

 

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 05 February, 2014


 


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 1:19 PM EST
Updated: Wednesday, 11 February 2015 5:00 AM EST
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Thursday, 12 December 2013
Memorial Plaque to Sergei and Ella in Moscow
Topic: Sergei Alexandrovich GD

 
A plaque in memory of the first chairpersons of the Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society, Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich and Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna, was installed at the new IOPS museum-center in Moscow on November 1, 2013.
 
For more information on the IOPS Museum-Center in Moscow, please refer to the following link;

IOPS Opens Museum in Moscow 

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 12 December, 2013
 

 

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 9:41 AM EST
Updated: Wednesday, 11 February 2015 5:54 AM EST
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Saturday, 2 November 2013
IOPS Opens Museum in Moscow
Topic: Sergei Alexandrovich GD

 
The museum is housed in the IOPS Center, Ulitsa Zabalina 3 in Moscow
 
The Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society (IOPS) opened a new museum in Moscow last week. The opening ceremony was attended by the mayor of Moscow, Sergei Sobyanin. He toured the exhibition which includes a memorial plaque in honour of the Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich and his wife, the Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna. The plaque was consecrated by Archbishop Mark Egorievskiy.

Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich, was a founding member and served as the first President of IOPS from April 24, 1889-1905, while his wife, Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna, served as the second President of IOPS from 1905-1917.

The opening of the museum coincided with the birthday of the Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna (born November 1st, 1864 at Darmstadt). Since the end of the 19th century the IOPS have helped Russian pilgrims in the Holy Land. They have also established schools, hospitals and hospices in the Middle East, providing assistance to local residents, churches and clergy.

"Bit by bit, we have put together the story of the IOPS, which has played an important role in the fate of our country, and the development of relations between Russia and the countries of the Holy Land,” - said Sergey Stepashin, Chairman of IOPS.

Visitors to the museum can see the pilgrim relics from the Holy Land, books and brochures, issued by IOPS for many pilgrims, portraits and personal belongings of the chairmen and honorary members of the IOPS and more. There is also a section on modern-day Russian activities in the Holy Land, construction and restoration of pilgrimage centers, Russian spirituality and culture in Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Bari, Italy, and Syria, now war-torn. "Russia is returning to the Holy Land," - said Nicholas Lisovoy, deputy chairman of the IOPS for Science.

On the same day at the museum was a large-scale conference, In the Service of Moscow and the Fatherland, where researchers and social activists presented papers on the activities of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich and Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna, and the history of "Russian Palestine." Next year, they plan to install a monument to the grand ducal couple in Moscow.

The Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society was founded in 1882 by decree of Emperor Alexander III. Its members were all prominent members of the aristocracy, including members of the Imperial family. After the Revolution the society was renamed the Russian Palestine Society and attached to the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. In 1992 the IOPS was restored, and today operates 18 regional offices in Russia and seven overseas offices in Israel, Palestine, Greece, Cyprus and other countries. 
 

 
© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 02 November, 2013
 

 


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 7:53 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 11 February 2015 5:54 AM EST
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Wednesday, 9 October 2013
The Final Resting Place of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich
Topic: Sergei Alexandrovich GD

The remains of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich, Novospassky Monastery in Moscow 

On February 17, 1905, Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich was assassinated near the Nikolsky Gate of the Moscow Kremlin. Unlike all the other grand dukes who were buried in the Peter and Paul Cathedral St. Petersburg, his remains were buried in a crypt of the Chudov Monastery within the precincts of the Moscow Kremlin. On April 2, 1908, a memorial cross designed by Viktor Vasnetsov was erected on the spot where he was murdered. The cross was later destroyed by the Bolsheviks, led by Vladimir Lenin himself on May 1, 1918.

The Chudov Monastery was demolished in 1930, to make way for the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet which was built on the site. The burial crypt of the Grand Duke was located in a courtyard of that building, which had been used as a parking lot. The crypt remained undisturbed for decades, when in 1986, building workers doing repairs in the Kremlin discovered the blocked up entrance of the burial vault. The coffin was opened and found to contain the Grand Duke’s remains, covered with the military greatcoat of the Kiev regiment, decorations, and an icon. He had left written instructions that he was to be buried in the Preobrazhensky Lifeguard regiment uniform, but as his body was so badly mutilated this proved impossible. 

On September 17, 1995, the coffin was officially exhumed.  His Holiness Patriarch Alexy II held a Panikhida in the Cathedral of the Archangel of the Moscow Kremlin. The grand duke’s remains were then transferred and reburied in a vault of the Novospassky Monastery in Moscow. In 1999, a replica of the memorial cross destroyed by the Bolsheviks in 1918 was erected on the grounds of the monastery. The new monument was created by D. Grishin, and the sculptor Nikolai Orlov and based on the original sketches by Viktor Vasnetsov. 
 

A replica of Vasnetsov's memorial cross now stands on the grounds of the monastery marking the spot of the grand duke's crypt
 
© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 09 October, 2013
 

 

Posted by Paul Gilbert at 2:22 PM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 11 February 2015 5:54 AM EST
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Thursday, 14 June 2012
Moscow Streets to be Renamed After the Romanovs?
Topic: Sergei Alexandrovich GD

 

 

Russia’s new culture minister, Vladimir Medinsky has proposed the changing the name of two streets in Moscow in honour of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich and his wife, Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna.

Speaking at the opening of the exhibition Russia in the Holy Land, which marks the 130th anniversary of the Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society in Moscow, he said that the names of the Romanov family members “should replace the names of terrorists and murderers.”

Medinsky believes that changing the names of these streets will help educate the citizens of Moscow about two members of the Romanov dynasty, each of whom made a major contribution to the history of the city and its inhabitants.

Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich - the son of Emperor Alexander II, from 1891 was the military governor-general of Moscow. He headed the Imperial Orthodox Palestine Society, was the honorary chairman of the Russian Historical Museum, and a trustee of the Moscow Theological Academy. He was assassinated by terrorists on February 17, 1905. His remains were exhumed in 1995 and reburied in a vault of the Novospassky Monastery in Moscow.

After his murder, his wife, Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna (born Princess Elizabeth of Hesse, she was the eldest sister to the Empress Alexandra Feodorovna) then departed the Imperial Court. She was renowned during her lifetime for her missionary, educational and charitable work. The Martha and Mary Convent of Mercy which she created with her own funds continues to this day to assist the needy. In 1918 she was arrested and murdered by the Bolsheviks. In 1981 Elizabeth was canonized by the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia and in 1992 by the Moscow Patriarchate.

Vladimir Medinsky, viewed by his opponents as an “odd monarchist” created headlines earlier this week when he proposed that the body of Vladimir Lenin be removed from the mausoleum on Red Square and given a proper burial.

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 14 June, 2012

 


 


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 8:17 AM EDT
Updated: Wednesday, 11 February 2015 5:54 AM EST
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Tuesday, 10 April 2012
The Romanovs: Elizabeth and Sergei
Now Playing: Language: Russian. Duration: 1 hour, 52 minutes, 42 seconds
Topic: Sergei Alexandrovich GD

This documentary tells about the life and work for the benefit of Holy Russia, of the Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna and the Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich.

Married in 1884, they shared a great love and shared a deep Christian life up until 1905 when the Grand Duke Sergei was murdered by terrorists in Moscow. His wife gave up her privileged life at the Russian Imperial Court and became a nun. She founded the Martha and Mary Convent in Moscow dedicated to helping the downtrodden in Moscow. In 1918, she was arrested by the Bolsheviks and murdered at Alapeyevsk.

 

This documentary, made in 2009, tells their story through vintage photographs and film footage, diary and letter excerpts, and more. It is the second of more than 20 films entitled The Romanov Project.

© Paul Gilbert @ Royal Russia. 10 April, 2012


  


Posted by Paul Gilbert at 10:25 AM EDT
Updated: Tuesday, 10 April 2012 11:08 AM EDT
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Tuesday, 20 March 2012
Sergei and Ella: Images from an Exhibition
Topic: Sergei Alexandrovich GD

 

More images from the exhibition of photographs of the Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich and his wife, the Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna, which opened in Belgorod, Russia on March 8th.

The organiser of the exhibit is the Berlyukovskogo Monastery of St. Nicholas Foundation.

© Royal Russia. 20 March, 2012



Posted by Paul Gilbert at 6:40 AM EDT
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