From icons to Kandinsky, this is the premiere collection of Russian art; most of it unjustly neglected or excluded from the Western canon of art history.
10-12 Lavrushinsky Pereulok
Hours: 10a.m.-8p.m. Tues-Sun.
Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts
This is to Moscow what the Hermitage is to St. Petersburg -- the major collection of Western art and antiquities. In 1995, it confessed to owning hundreds of works seized from Germany by the Red Army after World War II. These revelations fueled worldwide debate regarding their restitution. In 1997, the Russian parliament passed a bill that made the art property of the Russian state.
12 Volkhonka Ulitsa
Hours: 10 a.m.- 6 p.m. Tue-Sun.
Andrei Rybliov Museum
(inside the Andronnikov Monastery)
The museum is named for the monastery's most celebrated monk - fifteenth century icon painter Andrei Ryblyov. Strangely, there are not any of Rybliov's own icons here, but visiting is worthwhile to see the collection from the Moscow, Rostov and Novgorod schools of painting.
10 Andronyevskaya Ploshchad
Metro: Ploshchad Ilicha
Hours: 11 a.m.- 6 p.m. Mon., Tues., Thus- Sun. Closed last Friday of the month.
Some Private Galleries
Moscow hosts numerous private galleries that are open for public viewing. Most feature free admssion, and many retain the provocative style of Soviet art venues. The Gelman Gallery (7/7 Ulitsa Malaya Polyanka, Tel: 238-8492, Metro: Polyanka) has exhibitions that are usually incorporated into some kind of "happening."
Andrei Sakharov Museum and Community Center
Located in a handsome park across the Garden Ring from the Andrei Sakharov Archives, the museum is a memorial to human rights activist and Nobel Laureate, Andrei Sakharov. It is funded by several Russian and U.S. based foundations dedicated to the development of civil society in Russia and promotes Sakharov's ideals of tolerance, democracy, and civil liberties.
6/56 Zemlyanoi Val.
State Historical Museum
The development of Russian civilization, from the early Neanderthal stirrings to the formation of the Kievan Rus, is exhibited here, giving a good idea of what the first and most ferocious tribes to roam the Russian plains actually looked like.
1 Krasnaya Ploshchad
Metro: Ploshchad Revolutsii, or Okhotny Ryad
Hours: 11 a.m.- 7 p.m. Mon., Wed-Sun.
Central Museum of the Revolution
This is the best twentieth century museum in Moscow. Exhibits range from stones thrown at policemen during the 1905 Revolution to a complete and level headed account of the revolution and coups of the early 1990s.
21 Tverskaya Ulitsa
Hours: 10 a.m.- 6 p.m. Mon.-Sat, 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. Sun.
Celebrated futurist poet Vladimir Myakovsky moved into a room in this modest communal apartment in 1919, and lived here intermittently until 1930. Some rooms are preserved as they were when Mayakovsky committed suicide, and others illustrate a futurist chaos strewn with comics drawn by the poet, first editions of his poems and love letters to Lila Brik, with whom he lived for some time.
3/6 Lybyansky Proyezd
Hours: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon., Tues., Fri-Sun, 1-9 p.m. Thurs.
A spectacular example of the style modern complete with ceramic tiles and a cascading marble staircase, this was the home of Maxim Gorky from 1931-36 after he was persuaded by Stalin to return to Russia, but before he was allegedly poisoned by Yagoda, one of Stalin's henchmen.
6/2 Malaya Nikitskaya Ulitsa
Hours: 12-7 p.m. Wed, Fri, 10 a.m.- 5 p.m. Thurs, Sat, Sun. Closed last Friday of the month.
ESTATES AND MONASTERIES
This pink neo-classical building was built of wood in the 1770s by the serfs of Count Sheremeyev, one of the richest landowners in Russia and also responsible for Ostankino. It is the only building of its kind to survive in Russia, and also features extensive gardens fashioned in classical eighteenth century style and marble sculptures imported from Italy. Also hosts a porcelain collection, some hand-decorated with Bolshevik slogans and portraits of the great leaders.
2 Ryazansky Proyezd
Metro: Perovo, then a 10 minute walk, or Metro Ryazansky Prospekt, then bus 133 or 208.
Hours: 10 a.m.- 6 p.m. Wed- Sun. Closed last Wed of the month.
Built between 1792-98, this is another one of Count Sheremetyev's serf-built palaces. The interior boasts richly adorned ceilings and walls, and an oriental atmosphere in the main hall. The grounds often host summer concerts, and there is a separate pavilion that houses temporary exhibits.
5 1-ya Ostankino Ulitsa
Hours: 18 May- 1 Oct 10 a.m.- 5p.m. Tues.- Sun, Closed when it is raining, or when humidity is over 80%.
Most of all, Kolomenskoye is a wonderful expanse of park that attracts many people but never gets crowded. Part of the area is taken up by the Museum of Wooden architecture, as which Kolomenskoye began life in 1667 when Tsar Alexsei erected a wooden palace on the premises. The haphazard arrangement of connecting corridors and bulbous domes was pulled down by Catherine the Great, but not before she ordered an exact model to be made, which is now housed in the museum.
Metro: Kolomenskaya, exit at the front of the train, turn left in the underpass, then right and walk straight ahead up the hill.
Hours: grounds- 10 a.m.- 8 p.m. Tues-Sun, museum-11 a.m.-5 p.m. Tues.- Sun.
The Volkov-Yusupov chambers are a rarity for the fact that they have weathered the test of time. Resembling a fairy-tale castle, the stone house at 21 Bolshoi Kharitonyevsky Pereulok dates back to the 16th century, with reconstruction and redesign continuing up until the 19th century. The powerful and influential have resided in its rooms and wandered in its gardens, including Ivan the Terrible and a very young Alexander Pushkin.
21 Bolshoi Kharitonyevsky Pereulok
Metro: Krasnye Vorota
Established in 1524 to commemorate the recapture of Smolensk by Russian forces, Novodevichy (New Convent of the Maidens) is one of the most beautiful in the city. While the monastery is beautiful, Novodevichy Cemetery is one of the most fascinating spots in Moscow. pre-Revolutionary artistic luminaries, Communist generals and politicians who didn't quite make it into the Kremlin wall, as well as Soviet scholars and scientists. Many twentieth century giants are found here, such as, Mikhail Bulgakov, Vladimir Myakovsky, Sergei Eisenstein, Shostavich and Nikita Khrusckev.
1 Novodovichy Proyezd
Hours: 8 a.m.- 7 p.m. daily.
Founded in 1591 by Tsar Fyodor Ioannovich to house the Donskaya Icon of the Mother of God as a mark of gratitude for victories over Crimean warlords, the Donskoi Monastery has been plundered three times over the Time of Troubles, Napoleon and the Revolution- after which it became a museum to atheism. Russian tours by one of the monks are extremely rewarding, the charge being a contribution towards upkeep. Visitors should recognize that it is a working monastery and exercise respectful behavior and modest dress while there.
1 Donskaya Ploshchad
Hours: 7 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. daily.
VVTs (All-Russia Exhibition Centre)
Established in 1937, and containing of more than 80 pavillions each representing one aspect of the great economic, industrial and technical might of communism, the Exhibition of Economic Achievements functioned as such until the 1980s. Today, miniature trains ferry shoppers around this gigantic complex.
Hours: 9 a.m.- 8 p.m. Mon- Fri, 9 a.m.- 9 p.m. Sat, Sun, public holidays.