Krasnoyarsk Art Museum named after V.Surikov is a place, which unites connoisseurs of various art forms. Its history dates back more than 60 years.
It goes back into the mid-1950s when fine arts were flourishing in Krasnoyarsk art life, but there were no proper museums or exhibition halls to display it. So the necessity to establish a museum of fine arts arose.
On May 31,1957 Council of Ministers of the RSFSR issued an order to set up Art Gallery, and soon the Culture Ministry issued an order to establish Krasnoyarsk Regional Art Gallery.
The ground floor of the dwelling house at 68, Krasnoyarsky Rabochy Ave. was allocated for the gallery on the right bank.
On May 1, 1958 the Gallery was solemnly opened commemorating the 110th anniversary of the birth of V.Surikov.
The first staff of the gallery was moderate – apart from the Head – Alexander Spevakovsky, and heads of conservation – M.Prozorova and V.Sergin, there were only 4 scientific associates.
Artists came to their aid, people who were enamored with art. Lately some of them became employees of the gallery.
Since August 1958 Scientific board, comprising artists Y.Khudonogov, I.Firer, Ya.Eselevich, Ya.Kobytev, V.Sergin, Honored Artist of the RSFSR R.Ruiga, sculptor A.Abdrakhimov and others had been functioning.
Museum collections got more than 600 paintings, graphic and sculptural works, items of applied art of XVIII-XX centuries. It was enriched by the artworks of I.Repin, I.Aivazovsky, G.Gurkin, S.Zhukovsky, I.Endogurov, D.Karatanov and many others.
Throughout 1960-1970s the gallery was headed by Vladimir Lomanov. It was the period of “museum boom” in the country.
Meanwhile our gallery's collection has increased 5 times. The collection was enlarged by works of V.Byalynitsky-Biruli, S.Ivanov, K.Korovin, V.Polenov, A.Lekarenko, B.Ryauzov, A.Pozdeev, R.Ruiga and others. The main collection an storage work was carried out by the Head of conservation for a museum E.Gontarovsky.
Extensive work was done by the staff:
- Catalogues, collection of paintings, graphics and applied art from the gallery collection were published.
- Lectures were given, Welcome Days, themed nights and meetings with artists were held.
- Exhibitions were held not only within the gallery walls, but outwards as well.
- Artworks of Krasnoyarsk artists were displayed at All-Union Exhibitions in Moscow (1976) and Leningrad (1977).
- Traveling exhibits were put on a show throughout Krasnoyarsk region.
- Creative teams from Western and Eastern Siberia took part in Regional art exhibition “Socialistic Siberia” in 1969.
- The gallery arranged annual art exhibitions of Children's crafts “Snowdrop”.
- Art Gallery hosted the “Club of young fine art experts”.
In 1982 the Gallery was additionally provided with a room on the ground floor of the dwelling house with a special storage area at 12, Mira ave.
In 1983 the Maison of Gadalov merchant family, which is located in the city centre at 20, Parizhskoy Communi Str. was signed over.
On June 17, 1983 Art Gallery was converted into Krasnoyarsk Art Museum named after V.Surikov.
The collection was enriched more than 6000 artworks, like I.Aivazovsky, Y.Clever, I.Kramskoy, I.Levitan. Extrinsic value of the museum were Surikov`s watercolour and fine art paintings, presented by grandson of the artist – M.Konchalovsky. Masterpiece “the Annunciation” was amongst them.
In the 1980s the museum was managed by:
- Ann Abisova – fine art expert (1981-1982);
- Galina Vakhmenina – a member of The Union of Journalists of Russia (1982-1983);
- Neonila Isayeva – fine art expert, professor, eminent culture figure of the RF (1984-1987).
A new era of museum history started with the advent of the new head Alexander Efimovsky. Over 23 years of his leadership, the museum opened restoration workshop, publishing activities rapidly developed, just as numerous exhibitions were held, including national and international importance.
In early 1980s the museum became an initiator of research-to-practice conference “Surikov`s Readings”, which soon acquired republican status. The participants were museums from Mocsow, St.Petersburg, Ekaterinburg, Tomsk, Tobolsk, Saratov, Abakan, Yakutsk, Kharkov, Novosibirsk and other cities.
The restoration work at Gadalov`s Maison became an important event. By mid-January 1998, the reconstruction was finished and the Maison at 20, Parizhskoy Communi Str. acquired the form of museum.
In 2011 the museum was granted the status of cultural institution of the regional level.
Marina Moskaluk, Doctor of Art History, a member of Russian Association of Artists headed the museum. During this period:
- The scientific and fund activity moved to a new level;
- New curriculums and events appeared;
- The museum actively entered grant and project activities;
- The staff was increased;
- The museum started digital imaging of collections.
The idea of creating the Museum area appeared in the midst of diversified museum development.
Since 2016 and up to date, Vladimir Luzan, Doctor of Cultural studies, a member of the Association of fine art experts, a board member of NGO “Association of Krasnoyarsk science communicators” has been managing the museum. Since that time the museum has been implementing crucial educational and cultural projects.
In 2018, the museum launched “Museum-educational Centre”,where various lectures, workshops and academic programs are held. Moreover the museum undertakes efforts to organize accessible environment and educational practices for visitors with disabilities.
Various areas of research work, educational activities are implemented trough grant programs of Russian Science Foundation, V.Potanin Charity Foundation, M.Prokhorov Foundation and others.
The idea of creating the Museum area got further development.
Endowment fund was created to support this project, advocacy and development of museum collection of the RF, advance of the museum.
Today the collection of our museum includes more than 16000 items – paintings, graphics, sculpture, arts and crafts.
A unique piece of collection is 78 paintings and graphics by V.Surikov.
The collection of modern art is especially valuable for art collection of Russian avant-garde: artworks by V.Surikov, V.Kandinsky, K.Malevich, D.Sternberg and others.
The museum collection widely presents arts and crafts: pottery, tapestry, jewelers, glass, porcelain, as well as amateur and folk arts: Gzhel, Khokhloma, Gorodets, Polkov-Maydan paintings.
Our museum cooperates with the largest museums of Russia: the State Tretyakov Gallery, the State History Museum, State Russian Museum, State Museum of history of religion, State Museum of oriental Art and Yaroslavl Art Museum.
The museum takes part in all-Russian events “Museum night”, “Night of Arts”, as well as citywide and regional events “Zeleniy”, “Educational Forum”, “Krasnoyarsk Economic Forum”, “Krasnoyarsk Book Fair”.
The museum has international awards: Golden Palm (Paris,France,1997): Grand Prix for participation in major international exhibitions, “Museum of The Year” (1999) and was named one of the 20th museums of the Russian Federation.
In 2013 Krasnoyarsk Art Museum became a prizewinner in nomination of the best social project (joint project with Krasnoyarsk regional Main Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs), organized by the magazine “Museum World”.
The museum is focused on constant development – we still have a lot of outstanding plans and ideas. Stay turned and follow the events. We have so much to look forward to!