The Burganov HouseRussian: Dom Burganova or Дом Бурганова is a small museum of modern sculpture, which evolved out of the studio of Alexander Burganov, People’s Artist of Russia, USSR State Prize laureate. Despite the impressive number of awards and regalia, this museum is not only entered on Alexander Burganov’s work but rather is a manifestation of his successful attempt to involve the audience in the varied and exciting world of three-dimensional art. At the Burganov House, the question of reality vs. transcendence of being arises naturally, as cultural and philosophical issues are exposed – these in particular are those which professor of art criticism Alexander Burganov employs in his work.
As is often typical, the most interesting and unexpected places in a city are hidden from prying eyes behind the facades of buildings. This is the case with many of the ArbatRussian: Арбат side streets that conceal the mysteries and long-gone spirit of old Moscow. Once you have ventured away from the well-trodden tourist trail, you are greeted not only by old-time houses but also by the eclecticism of Art Nouveau and contemporary architecture as well as charming yards and museums not even every Muscovite knows about. One of these little treasures is a collection of sculptures known as the Burganov House hidden in Bolshoy Afanasyevsky side streetRussian: Bolshoi Afanasievsky pereulok or Большой Афанасьевский переулок. The museum is a 30-minute walk from Kremlin Red Square.
It is truly powerful for those who want to gain inspiration, because here sculptures take on life. They are literally all around you – on a side street, in the museum courtyard, under the roof, on the beams, and on the floor. Monumental and easel works, both large and small, moulds, slabs, and sketches the artist has just begun working on – these are the the elements which creates the world of romantic realism and gentle surrealism, Burganov’s major themes.
The main pavilion of the museum called “The House of PegasusRussian: Dom Pegasa or Дом Пегаса” is dominated by the soaring winged character of ancient Greek myths. In front of the entrance there are glass representations alluding to the famous pyramid in front of the Louvre. Symbols and allegories take centre stage in Burganov’s works. He easily breaks the boundaries between different genres and allows his creativity to have free reign while giving his audience a chance to tune in to the creative process. The museum displays his famous works “LetterRussian: Pismo or Письмо”, “FingersRussian: Paltsy or Пальцы”, “The Big BookRussian: Bolshaya kniga or Большая книга” – a true ode to surrealism, the development of which is part of the Burganov House concept.
The museum collection also boasts creations from ancient times, including sculptures and ceramics which fit in seamlessly with Burganov’s own works. Findings brought in from Samos island, Athens, Pergamon, and Rome are mesmerisingly charming – despite the damage they have suffered, they preserve the harmony of lines and their expressive features. The professional annotations provided by the museum highlight the laconism, elegance, bold concept and implementation of these invaluable works as well allowing viewers to make comparisons to other masterpieces of the time.
Burganov’s children Maria and Igor follow in their father’s footsteps. Their sculptures along with works by graduates of the Stroganov Moscow State University of Arts and IndustryRussian: Moskovskaya gosudarstvennaya khudozhestvenno-promyshlennaya akademiya imeni S. Stroganova or Московская государственная художественно-промышленная академия имени С. Строганова can be seen in the museum.
The Burganov House regularly runs themed exhibitions seeking to find new forms of contemporary sculpture. For example, classical traditions served as a basis for the exhibition “The Art of Sculpture: New FormatRussian: Iskusstvo skulptury: novyi format or Искусство скульптуры: новый формат”, which presents contemporary artists’ studies in separating and merging sculpture and other fine arts and architecture. In order to minimize the difficulty visitors might experience in understanding the ambiguous world of contemporary art, the museum offers educational programmes and excursions to help them find answers to the key questions of art theory. Children can take part in special weekend projects and festivals during the school holidays. They get to know the world of culture better and learn how to create their own artwork. Moreover, the Burganov House is an active and inventive participant of city campaigns such as Museum NightRussian: Noch muzeev or Ночь музеев and the Night of ArtsRussian: Noch iskusstv or Ночь искусств. To sum up, if you happen to be walking along some of Arbat’s side streets, make sure you drop into this museum.© 2016-2023 moscovery.com