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Mstislav Farmakovsky. 150th Anniversary of the Artist’s Birth

Mstislav Farmakovsky. Self-Portrait. 1920. Pastel on cardboard
15 March—13 May 2024

The exhibition is held in the Garden Lobby of the Mikhailovsky Palace

Mstislav Farmakovsky (1873–1946) was an artist and chief curator at the State Russian Museum. The exhibition, dedicated to the 150th anniversary of his birth, opens up the art of this brilliant master of the Silver Age for the first time ever and pays tribute to the memory of the Russian Museum’s outstanding employee.

The exhibition features about 15 paintings and drawings, and archival materials, including the handwritten journal Cast Iron Hat issued by the Social and Historical Department.

Mstislav Farmakovsky received his art education in Odessa and Düsseldorf, then worked in Paris where he published the art magazine Sirius together with the poet Nikolai Gumilev. The 2nd issue of Sirius featured the literary debut of Anna Gorenko (Akhmatova) with the poem “On his hand are many shiny rings...” (1907). Some of Farmakovsky’s works from the Paris period are related to the poetry of Nikolai Gumilev. During the Soviet years, however, Farmakovsky replaced his artistic activity with academic and curatorial work at the Russian Museum, the Institute of the History of Material Culture of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and teaching. The artist’s painting heritage was not publicized and was almost forgotten.

At the Russian Museum, Mstislav Farmakovsky is known for his work in recording and storing of museum objects, restoration and climatology. He played an important role in establishing the restoration department in the Russian Museum and in developing the operating principles of various museum services, including the museum objects recording system. He published Storage of Museum Valuables (1940), Air Regime in Museums (1941) and Conservation and Restoration of Museum Collections (1947). During World War II, Farmakovsky worked as a chief curator and devoted himself to preserving the part of the Russian Museum collection which had not been evacuated from Leningrad.

Age restriction: 16+

Mstislav Farmakovsky. Self-Portrait. 1920. Pastel on cardboard Mstislav Farmakovsky. Autumn in the Park. Peterhof. 1911. Pastel on cardboard Mstislav Farmakovsky. Tropical Landscape. Second half of the 1900s. Pastel and watercolour on cardboard Mstislav Farmakovsky. Evening on the Nile. Reproduced in Art et Décoration, 1907. 1907. Indian ink, bronze and white pigment on cardboard Mstislav Farmakovsky. Law. From the graphic series Life. 1907. Indian ink and white pigment on cardboard Mstislav Farmakovsky. The Black Sea. Reproduced in Art et Décoration, 1907. 1906. Watercolour, Indian ink and bronze on paper

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