In St. Petersburg hosted a roundtable on the heritage of St. Andrey Rublev

Photo: Stanislav Marchenko

In the framework of the VII St. Petersburg international cultural forum at the House of architects on 15 November held a “round table” on the theme “the Heritage of St. Andrey Rublev in the conservation of monuments in Russia”, IA “living Water”. It was organized by the world club of Petersburgers (CPSU) and Union of architects of St. Petersburg.

Welcome remarks said the Chairman of the section of the restorers of the Union of architects Rafael Dayanov. Member of the CPSU Vladimir Derbenev noted that the conference venue is symbolic: St. Petersburg is located on the ancient Novgorod land, which, in turn, refers to the Russian North, associated with the phenomenon of the Holy Trinity St. Alexander Svirsky. Until 1917 the city’s birthday was celebrated on the feast of the Trinity, and “Trinity” – the most famous icon of the brush of the monk Andrei Rublev.

The keynote presentation was made by head of the sector of Church archaeology of the Central Museum of ancient Russian culture and art named after Andrei Rublev academician Oleg Ulyanov. He recalled that in the current year was 590 years, the blessed death of the great painter of Ancient Russia: “the birthdays of the saints in our Church is never recorded. The birthday of the Saint is his death, the day he was born for the Kingdom of Heaven.” Official celebrations on this occasion was not, however, the date was devoted to a series of cultural events in several Russian cities.

Academician spoke about the history of the Spaso-Andronikov monastery, where he asceticised the monk Andrei Rublev, in the twentieth century. Shortly after the war, 10 December 1947, the feast of the blessed virgin “the Sign”, Stalin signed a decree on the establishment in a former monastery historical-architectural reserve of a name of Andrey Rublev. But he never was created – to prevent the Khrushchev persecution. However, the Andrei Rublev Museum in the time of Khrushchev was still open – has helped numerous petitions cultural figures, including academician Mikhail Alpatov, author of the first monograph on the work of the great painter.

In the 1980s, under the leadership of Professor Ulyanov during excavations at the Andronikov monastery were uncovered, identified and brought to burial for the first time in Soviet practice – the relics of Bishop of Tambov and Penza Pachomius (Simansky), a relative of Patriarch Alexis I, a Bishop lived in the monastery after pochylenie retired, died may 5, 1789. It is symbolic that the relics were found to be exactly 200 years later, in 1989. Thanks to the blessing of Patriarch Pimen was revived liturgical life in the Saviour Cathedral of the monastery.

Touched the speaker and the earlier history of the study of the heritage of Andrei Rublev, including the activities of priest Paul Florensky on the Commission for the protection of monuments of art and antiquities of the Trinity-St. Sergius Lavra; in this work, father Paul took the blessing of Patriarch Tikhon.

The role of the Soviet authorities in the preservation of cultural heritage was ambivalent: on the one hand, concern about its preservation strongly argued, on the other – much has been sold abroad, including skilled forgery, which is specifically for this and was made. Among them were copies of the icons of Andrei Rublev.

However, in Soviet times, actively engaged in the restoration of icons: in 1918, for exhibition for the first time “opened” Rublev “Trinity” and a few other icons. In the same period there was a campaign of the abuse of Holy relics. In 1930, there was an unprecedented anti-religious campaign of mass burning of icons in different cities of Russia. At the same time in Moscow was blown up Chudov Cathedral, from which the restorer Pyotr Baranovsky (1892-1984) was able to bring the relics of Saint Alexis, Metropolitan of Moscow, who are in the Epiphany Yelokhovo Cathedral. In the framework of the same campaign, the icon of the Holy Trinity was taken from the Trinity-Sergius Lavra and transferred to the Tretyakov gallery.

The first collector of the works of Andrei Rublev was the monk Joseph of Volotsk. Touched academician and controversial moments of the biography of the painter: the information about it remained very small, until now there are disputes about how, when he was born, what year was tonsured. I know for certain, only the date of his death – October 17, 1428. The grave of the monk also lost: it is known that he, along with another painter, Daniel Black, was buried under the monastery bell tower, which to our days has not been preserved. In 2003 during excavations in the Spaso-Andronikov monastery, a grave was discovered two monks, about 50, and 70 years and were able to establish that their remains were reburied. There is a hypothesis that this is the grave of Andrei Rublev and Daniil Black, but it is not yet confirmed and have not denied.

The speaker dwelled on the characteristics of the plots and graphic style of individual icons letters of Andrei Rublev. Speaking of the “Trinity”, he noted that there are still different points of view, what is the hypostasis of the Holy Trinity represents each of the three angels. According to Oleg Ulyanov, the number of parts indicates that the icon depicts – from left to right – Father, Holy Spirit and Son.

Scientist disproved a common misconception that the plot of “Trinity,” developed by the iconographer, and his icons of the Holy Trinity is always depicted Abraham and Sarah: “Is not “the Hospitality of Abraham and Sarah” is another iconographic plot, and it existed earlier,” he said, giving in proof many illustrations.

The speaker answered questions from the audience – painters, restorers, art historians, including employees of the Hermitage and the Russian Museum.

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