The State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow is a home of unique collection of Russian art of a period of 1000 years. It is one of largest museums in Russia with over 150 000 exhibits – although the majority of them are paintings, there are also large collections of icons, graphics and sculpture. The State Tretyakov Gallery is a cultural highlight and an absolute must-see in Moscow.
- Region in Russia: Moscow
- Topic: Museum
- Best Season: Summer, Autumn, Winter, Spring
- Family & Kids: Yes
The State Tretyakov Gallery: Unique Collection of Russian Art in Moscow
The famous State Tretyakov Gallery is one of the world’s most well-known art museums and an absolute must-see in Moscow. This cultural highlight of Moscow hosts a unique collection of Russian art and possesses masterpieces of a period of a thousand years. The gallery was found by the Moscow merchant Pavel Tretyakov, who presented his already famous collection to the Russian nation in 1892. The façade of the building was designed by the famous Viktor Vasnetsov in a unique Russian fairy-tale style.
Nowadays, the collection consists of more than 150,000 exhibits. Among works of art that can be seen at the main building of the Tretyakov Gallery are “Trinity” by Andrei Rublev, “Ivan the Terrible and His Son Ivan” by Ilya Repin, “Black Square” by Kazimir Malevich, and other famous works of Russian artists.
Where to go in Moscow and what to see in the Russian capital? What to do in Moscow when it is raining? Which are the best museums in Moscow? The famous State Tretyakov Gallery welcomes you with its incredible collection.
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The History of the Tretyakov Gallery
One of the most interesting museums in Moscow and one of the largest collections of Russian Art, the State Tretyakov Gallery is named after its founder – Pavel Tretyakov, the greatest Moscow art patron. The gallery is located in an estate which was built back in 17th century. Tretyakov bought the estate in 1852 and moved his art collection there. The patron needed more than 30 years to put his collection of Russian art together.
In August 1892, Pavel Tretyakov gave his collection to the city of Moscow, and before he died, the museum was already functioning and was open to public free of charge.
In the beginning of the 20th century, the building was reconstructed – Russian-style façade designed by Viktor Vasnetsov was added. This façade has become an emblem of the State Tretyakov Gallery, famous museum and an absolute must-see in Moscow.
The treasures of the State Tretyakov Gallery, or the main higlights of the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow
An absolute must see in Moscow, the State Tretyakov Gallery is housed on 8 buildings. The two of them – the main historical building on Lavrushinsky Lane and the building on Krymsky Val – are the ones that host permanent core collection. Other buildings are used for temporary exhibitions and are of minor importance to those visiting Moscow for a short period of time.
The Gallery’s historical building is number one on your visiting list. It houses Russian art form the 11th to the early 20th century.
In the Old Russia Art section you will get acquainted with selection of icons from the 12th till 17th centuries created by both unknown and famous Russian icon painters (including Andrei Rublev, Theophanes the Greek and Dionysius). The highlight of icons collection in Tretyakov Gallery is the famous “Trinity” by Andrei Rublev which is regarded as the highest achievement of Russian icon art (the icon is located in Hall 60 of the main building on Lavrushinsky Lane).
On display in the halls of the 18th to the first half of the 19th century are paintings by F.Rokotov, D.Levitsky, V.Borovikovsky, K.Bryullov, A. Ivanov and others. Among the highlight of this section are: The Apparation of Christ to the People by A.Ivanov (Hall 10) – the painter called the subject of his work “universal” and tried to show all of humanity in the moment when that decided its fate; A Rider by K.Bryullov (Hall 9) depicts one of the favourite themes of Romanticism – wild force submits toe fragile beauty; Portrait of Catherine II by F.Rokotov (Hall 4) – coronation portrait of the Empress that she herself considered to be the most successful of her many portraits.
The State Tretyakov possesses a wide collection of Russian Realism from the second half of the 19th century. It is one of the most interesting sections of the gallery since it offers the works of the golden age of Russian Art and holds masterpieces by I.Repin, V.Surikov, V.Vasnetsov, I.Levitan and many others. Among the highlights are: Ivan the Terrible and his Son Ivan on November 16, 1581 by I.Repin (Hall 30) – showing the episode of Russian history when Ivan the Terrible in a fit of anger killed his own son and the heir Ivan; Boyarina Morozova by V.Surikov (Hall 28) depicts another episode of Russian history – the Church Schism of the 17th century; Heroes (Bogatyri) by V.Vasnetsov – mighty figures of Old Russia’a legendary defenders painted at the turn of the 20th century is an attempt to bridge the heroic past of Russian people and its great future.
The collection of brilliant works of art from the turn of the 19th-20th centuries include masterpieces by M.Vrubel, V.Serov, masters of the World of Art, Union of Russian Artists and the Blue Rose groups. The highlights are: Demon by M.Vrubel (Hall 33) is among the first significant works of Russian symbolism with the central theme of the creative artist’s quest for supreme beauty; Girl with peaches by V.Serov (Hall 41) is the masterpiece of Russian impressionism.
The second major building of the gallery called The Tretyakov Gallery on Krymsky Val possesses the only permanent exhibition of 20th century Russian art on the country. On display are masterpieces by Russian avant-garde masters from the 1900s-1920s, famous all over the world – K.Malevich, V.Kandinsky, M.Chagall and others.
The treasures of The State Tretyakov Gallery are immense being one of the largest collections of Russian art. Make sure to visit this cultural highlight of Moscow and get acquainted with rich and wide-ranging Russian art.
Trinity by Andrei Rublev © tretyakovgallery.ru
A Rider by Karl Bryullov © tretyakovgallery.ru
Girl with Peaches by Valentin Serov © tretyakovgallery.ru
The State Tretyakov Gallery – Location Map & Contact Information
Lavrushinsky Lane, 10
109012 Moscow, Russia
How to get there – ARRIVAL INFORMATION
Metro Stations: Tretyakovskaya (Line 6 – orange line)
- Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Sundays — from 10.00 to 18.00 (ticket office and last admission until 17.00),
- Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays — from 10.00 to 21.00
(ticket office and last admission until 20.00),
- day-off — Monday
Find out about tickets and admission here.