Icons of Modern Art. The Shchukin Collection, Hermitage Museum – Pushkin Museum

Icons of Modern Art. The Shchukin Collection, Hermitage Museum – Pushkin Museum on exhibit at Foundation Louis Vuitton from October 20th, 2016 – February 20th, 2017.

After almost 100 years, the great collection consisting mainly of French Impressionists and Post-Impressionists will be on display in France. The collection was created by Russian textile merchant Sergei Shchukin in the first few decades of the twentieth century. The total collection contains over 250 paintings including a whopping 50 Picasso’s, 28 Matisse’s, 13 Monet’s, 8 Cezanne’s, 4 Van Gogh’s, and 16 Gauguin’s from his Tahiti collection. Until 1917, the collection resided in Shchukin’s house in Moscow, on display for the public. After the Russian Revolution in 1917, the collection was nationalized by Lenin. During much of the rule of Joseph Stalin, who considered the paintings to be “bourgeois and cosmopolitan,” the paintings were in storage. When the Nazi’s invaded Russian in 1941, the collection was sent to Siberia for safe keeping until the end of the war. Unfortunately, some of the paintings were damaged in transit. In 1948, Stalin divided the paintings between the Pushkin Museum in Moscow, and the Hermitage in Saint Petersburg. A Picasso retrospective in 1956 at both museums began the process of restoring the appreciation of this type of art.

Now, in 2016, the paintings are returning to France for a grand exhibition of some of the most famous painters in Art History. This exhibit has been under negotiations for a long time, and the Louis Vuitton Foundation has been building relationships with Russia for even longer. A reciprocal show has been promised for the future in Russia.


“His Life,” Collection Chtchoukine. Accessed October 19th, 2016. http://www.morozov-shchukin.com/html/AhistoA.html

Marlowe, Lara. “Loadsa Monet: The rich Russain who patroned Picasso, made Matisse,” The Irish Times. October 18th, 2016. Accessed October 19th, 2016. http://www.irishtimes.com/culture/art-and-design/loadsa-monet-the-rich-russian-who-patroned-picasso-made-matisse-1.2827132

Tarmy, James. “For the First Time in 100 Years, 130 Art Masterpieces Leave Russia,” Bloomberg. August 29th, 2016. Accessed October 19, 2016. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-08-29/for-the-first-time-in-100-years-130-art-masterpieces-leave-russia

“The Collections of Sergei Shchukin and Ivan Morozov,” Guggenheim. Accessed October 19th, 2016. https://www.guggenheim.org/arts-curriculum/topic/the-collections-of-shchukin-and-morozov

“Treasures of modern art to be seen outside Russia for first time,” The Guardian. February 10th, 2016. Accessed October 19, 2016. https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2016/feb/10/treasures-modern-art-seen-outside-russia-first-time-sergei-shchukin

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