December nights of Svyatoslav Richter-23 will be devoted to Russian-German Cultural Meetings. In line with the tradition marking the advent of winter, the international music festival is starting at Pushkin's State Museum of Fine Arts on Monday, this time under the motto Harmony and Counterpoint. Russia-Germany, 19th Century.
Before musical sounds are heard, an exhibition of Russian and German museums will open here. The show devoted to the dialogue of two schools of painting includes 98 pictures from the leading museums of Russia and Germany. Each of the schools - both the Russian and German - went through a period of flourishing in the 19th century, a department chief with the Tretyakov gallery and the project's curator, Doctor of History of Art Lyudmila Markina, explained in an interview with RIA Novosti.
The two countries' relations have many-centuries' history, interaction of their cultures is complex and deep, but the art of the 19th century is a particularly graphic illustration of such mutual assimilation. "Works by outstanding Russian and German painters make it possible to trace the main ways of both art schools' development, their unique national character, and to see their drawing closer together under the influence of European art processes", Markova noted.
Different art centres of Germany and Russia actively developed in their own original way in that epoch. Their best works were brought from different states of Germany: Hamburg's Kristahalle, the State Museums of Kassel, the museums of Essen, Karlsruhe and Duesseldorf, the Museum of Art and History of Culture of the Hansa city of Luebeck, the Stedelew Art Institute from Frankfurt-on-Main and the Classical Art Heritage Foundation of Weimar participate in the exhibition.
The Russian side is represented by five foremost museums - along with Pushkin's Museum, their list includes also the State Hermitage, the Historical Museum, the Russian Museum, and the Tretyakov Gallery.
It is symbolical that the festival - a part of the large-scale state cultural programme, Russian-German Cultural Meetings 2003-2004 - will be held at the turn of two years each of which is significant in its own way. The outgoing year was declared to be Year of Russian Culture in Germany, and the year 2004 - Year of Germany in Russia.
Near the United Nations Glass Palace in New York, there is a metallic sculpture entitled "Evil Defeated by Good", representing Saint George transfixing a dragon with his lance. It was donated by the USSR in 1990 to celebrate the INF Treaty concluded with the USA in 1987