Philanthropists in the history of the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts

The Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts owns one of Russia’s largest collections of artwork, from ancient masterpieces to contemporary art, and it was created thanks to active contributions by philanthropists. They supported both the construction of the building and the compilation of the Museum’s collection.

Иван Владимирович Цветаев (1847–1913) и Юрий Степанович Нечаев-Мальцов (1834–1913)

The Museum of Fine Arts, envisioned by its founder Ivan Tsvetaev (1847–1913) as an academic museum of casts affiliated to Moscow University and a public educational center, eventually became one of our country’s largest museum complexes.

The Committee for the Establishment of the Alexander III Fine Arts Museum was founded in 1898. This was a voluntary community of people who wanted to take an active part in the dissemination of knowledge in the field of fine arts. The Committee coordinated the efforts of Moscow University management, representatives of the highest authorities, and private individuals, who donated funds and pieces of art or provided other types of support to the future museum. Grand Duke Sergey Alexandrovich (1857–1905) served as the chairman of the Committee from its foundation until his tragic death in February 1905. According to a report from July 1895, Nicholas II ordered that a plot of land be provided for the Museum and that 200,000 rubles be allocated for construction.

The Committee chairman’s colleague (and vice-chairman) was well-known industrialist Yury Nechaev-Maltsov (1834–1913). In 1897 he bought the first original artifacts of Ancient Egyptian art and culture for the Museum. Nechaev-Maltsov spent a total of approximately 2 million rubles on artwork – two-thirds of all expenses of the Museum.

In 1909, three years prior to opening, annual payments to the Museum of Fine Arts were guaranteed by law. Before that time, as the Museum was being built, exhibits were paid for mainly by Committee founding members and other donors (more than 40 people in total). The contribution of every philanthropist is carefully preserved in the Museum’s history, and it is reflected in studies and books about the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts.


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Japanese prints of the 18th-19th century

Patrons of the New Art

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German Prints: Albrecht Dürer and his Teachers

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Ivan Tsvetaev Educational Art Museum at Russian State University for the Humanities

Site under development

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Coins And Medals Department

Sviatoslav Richter Memorial Apartment

Технология виртуальной реальности VR

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Italian Painting in 8th-20th centuries

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Museyon Center for Aesthetic Education

Masterpieces of Ancient Art

Человек как птица. Образы путешествий

18th-19th Century British Engraving

Restoration of Egyptian burial shroud. II-nd c. AD.

The State Museum of the Modern Western Art

Engraving in Russia in 18th and Early 19th Centuries

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