Contest for young restorers of the State Hermitage Preserving Cultural Heritage Together
28 September 2010 a press conference devoted to launching a joint program Contest for young restorers of the State Hermitage Preserving Cultural Heritage Together.
Partnership with Coca-Cola began in 1993 when the Company participated in providing up-to-date equipment to the museum’s Laboratory of Scientific Restoration of Tempera Painting. Thus the State Hermitage and Coca-Cola at a new turn returned to the theme that marked the beginning of the long-term and fruitful cooperation.
A grant awarding contest with professional placements in foreign museums and restoration centers is an educational program that allows obtaining additional professional experience and knowledge of modern restoration methods and materials and sharing it with colleagues from other Russian museums. By the results of placement each contest winner will hold a master class in one of the cities of the North-West – Kaliningrad, Arkhangelsk, Veliky Novgorod, as well as supervise execution of restoration works in the region relating to the theme of his/her master class in case if these restoration works are carried with aid of the funds allocated by the Company.
Chairman of the contest jury is M. Piotrovsky, Director of the State Hermitage. The jury also includes G. Vilinbakhov, S. Adaksin, V. Matveev, deputy directors of the State Hermitage; T. Baranova, Head of the museum’s Department of Scientific Restoration and Conservation; Lubo Gruich, Director General for Russia of Coca-Cola’s branch; A. Kozlovskaya, Director of Public Relations of Coca-Cola; K. Chukchukov, Regional General Manager for Russia’s North-West region of Coca-Cola HBC Eurasia.
The contest winners will be announced on 8 December 2010.
The total amount of donation provided for holding foreign placements will be 1,800,000 rubles. In addition, the Company is planning to offer separate grants for performing restoration works in the cities that are members of regional master classes in the amount of 1,000,000 rubles.
For the period of cooperation of the State Hermitage and Coca-Cola social investments of the Company into preserving Russia’s cultural heritage amounted to more than 50,000,000 rubles.
The history of development of restoration activities at the Hermitage is closely related to the history of the museum itself. In the 18th-19th centuries the attention was mainly paid to restoring the paintings that comprised the larger part of the collection, making uncomplicated restoration and repair of engravings and drawings, cleaning coins, medals, weapons, as well as gluing antique vases.
After the October Revolution of 1917 the fundamentals of scientific restoration began to form and develop. In relation to expanding the museum’s funds in 1920s–1930s there arose an issue of setting up a restoration department and a need of establishing new workshops and laboratories. Workshops of restoring graphics, fabric and items of applied art were opened. In 1936 an X-ray laboratory, the first one in the country, for systematic study of monuments’ structure was set up at the Hermitage.
During the Great Patriotic War (1941–1945) restorers, as well as all the museum’s employees, took care of evacuating items, ensuring the required storage conditions for collections, as well as preserving the museum’s buildings and monuments left in the sieged Leningrad.
During the post-war period the restorers’ activities were mainly focused on rescuing the works damaged in the course of evacuation and returned thereafter. Along with practicing masters, artists, art historians, specialists with technical and natural scientific education worked at the department. Using the accomplishments of contemporary science and engineering they developed a complex method of restoring works of art. Laboratories of restoring monumental painting and color stones and a chemical laboratory were established at the Hermitage.
Presently, the Department of Scientific Restoration and Conservation consists of thirteen laboratories (of easel painting, tempera painting, oriental painting, graphics, sculpture and color stones, works of applied art, monuments of organic materials, fabric, clocks and musical mechanisms, precious stones, luster ware and furniture). A total of 123 people are employed at the Department of Scientific Restoration and Conservation.
The majority of artists-restorers have the highest and the first qualifications. They perform works of restoration and conservation, preventive treatment of items, ensure their safety in repositories, at temporary and permanent exhibitions. Over 4,500 items undergo restoration annually. Restorers participate at meetings of restoration councils and commissions at the Hermitage and other Russian museums, consult foreign and domestic specialists, participate in archaeological expeditions on a regular basis. Placements for Russian and foreign colleagues are held within the Department.
Restoration of Rembrandts’ Danae, Giorgione’s Judith and an icon of Saint Sergius of Radonezh (early 16th century) are among the most labor-intensive and significant restoration projects.
(Coca-Cola Foundation (Atlanta, USA), Coca-Cola Export Corporation (Moscow), Coca-Cola HBC Eurasia)
1993 - 1996 – grant for equipping the Laboratory of Scientific Restoration of Tempera Painting.
1996 – grant for a multimedia equipment for educational purposes.
1997 – grant for equipping the computer class.
1998 – starting the patronage of the School Center’s programs and an exchange of educational programs.
Grant for issuing Fairy Tales of Knights under the Fairy Tale Hermitage educational program.
2000 – partial financing of the program for mentally retarded children Our Hermitage
Grant for issuing Pavilion Fairy Tales under the Fairy Tale Hermitage educational program.
2001 - 2002 – the Fairy Tale Hermitage family educational program for children aged 4 to 6 and their parents.
2003 – the Preserving Cultural Heritage Together joint program of making cans with logos of Coca-Cola and the Hermitage and images of the museum complex’s buildings.
Charity donation for reconstructing the Great Parade Courtyard of the Winter Palace.
2005 – Grant for issuing a book about the Hermitage for schools
Grant for creating the Ancient Rome educational program within the framework of the Virtual Academy program on the museum’s website.
2007 – donation for the Hermitage – the General Staff. The 21st Century Museum program. An agreement of 5-year cooperation with Coca-Cola Export Corporation was signed.
2008 – donation the Hermitage – the General Staff. The 21st Century Museum.
(Within the scope of cooperation with the support of the company the following exhibitions of the Hermitage 20/21 project were opened: America Today, Chuck Close. Seven Portraits, Timur’s Space. St Petersburg – New York)
2009 – the Hermitage – the General Staff. The 21st Century
Museum all-Russian contest for schoolchildren.