Plaster will soon be removed from the statue of Catherine the Great, the Russian Empress in 1762-1796, taken from Yerevan to Moscow. Now the statue is kept at the State Tretyakov Gallery.
This work by the famous Russian sculptor Alexander Opekushin /1838-1923/ has an unusual destiny. The statue made of the Carrara marble was established in the Grand Hall of the Moscow City Duma in 1896. After the proletarian revolution in 1917 it was kept in the depositories of the Fine Arts Museum and then in the studio of sculptor Sergei Merkurov. In the early 1950s the sculptor took the marble statue to the Armenian National Museum in Yerevan for the sake of its safety. The statue was kept there till the present day. The Moscow and Yerevan administrations recently agreed on the sculpture's return to the Russian capital.
According to the information of the Moscow City Hall, the statue of Catherine the Great is to be established at the previous place in the former Vladimir Lenin Museum where the City Hall was situated before the events of 1917.
Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Andrei Rudenko had a telephone conversation with US Ambassador to Russia John Sullivan