The Museum of Literature of the Silver AgeRussian: Muzey literatury Serebryanogo veka or Музей литературы Серебряного века of Russian Poetry is closely associated with Valery Yakovlevich Bryusov (1873-1924). He was a linguist, poet, writer and critic. He represented the artistic elite, who were united by the climate of the times in which they lived – the end of the 19th – the beginning of the 20th century. It was at this time that Russian literature became enriched with symbolism (Bryusov was one of the founders of this literary technique), Akmeismacmeists were a small group of early-20th-century Russian poets reacting against the vagueness and affectations of Symbolism, and Futurism. This period is characterized by the zenith of creative activity of poets such as D. Merezhkovsky, Z. Gippius, A. Blok, A. Bely, O. Mandelstam, A. Akhmatova, I. Severyanin, V. Mayakovsky and others.
Having gained motivation from the Golden Agethis term is referred to the first half of the 19th century remarkable for an unprecedented upsurge of creativity illuminated by poet Alexander Pushkin, glorified by A. Pushkin and his contemporaries, Valery Bryusov and his fellows gifted Russia with the finest works of poems and prose – rich in contrast and extremely diverse. You cannot miss this treasure trove of literary talent, which in many ways is inseparable from the heart of Moscow itself. For this reason, it was in the house at 30, Mira AvenueRussian: Prospekt Mira or Проспект Мира that the Museum of Literature of the Silver Age was created, affectionately called Bryusov’s HouseRussian: Domik Bryusova or Домик Брюсова by Muscovites.
Mira Avenue, one of Moscow’s oldest arterial roads, is known not only for its contemporary buildings but also for its tenement buildings and mansions dating from the second half of the 19th century. Here, on the historic 1st Meshchanskaya streetRussian: 1-ya Meschanskaya ulitsa or 1-ая Мещанская улица, residences were rapidly being constructed. Some leading architects involved in conceptualising these residential buildings include R. Klein, F. Shekhtel, V. Zagorski, V. Chagin and their colleagues. Valery Bryusov rented an apartment for the last fourteen years of his life in merchant-shoemaker I. Baev’s mansion. This cozy two-storey blue and white building is a fine example of “Northern Art Nouveau” style; it appeared in 1910 as a result of architect V. Chagin’s reconstruction of the original wooden house. As the mansion had burnt down and therefore come into a state of total disrepair, it was renovated in 1998.
In 1999, the year of Pushkin’s 200th anniversary, a branch of the Literature Museum dedicated to the history of the Silver Age opened in this building together with the exhibition “A. Pushkin and Russian Literature of the Silver AgeRussian: A.S. Pushkin i russkaya literatura Serebryanogo veka or А.С. Пушкин и русская литература Серебряного века” (Bryusov thoroughly studied Pushkin’s literary legacy, among other things).
Today, two floors of “Bryusov’s House” are occupied by a compact yet informative exhibition devoted to him, the famous lodger of the house, as well as important trends in Russian literature of the late 19th– early 20th centuries.
On the ground floor of the Museum of the Silver Age is the poet’s memorial office, where you can see his personal belongings. A unique set of furniture, an oak table, an extensive library containing rare books, a clock as well as paintings and drawings by N. Goncharova, F. Rerberg, N. Sapunov and others given to the poet by the artists are displayed here.
Bryusov’s life and work largely determined the phenomenon of the Silver Age – the time of new experimental trends in the culture of the Art Nouveau era, particularly in poetry. Some themed halls on the first floor are dedicated to Symbolism, Akmeism, and avant-garde. The first floor also houses the main exhibition hall where temporary themed diplays are arranged and lectures and meet-the-artist events are held. The permanent display features unique historical and cultural objects of the time including theater posters, magazine covers, manuscripts, graphics and paintings by famous 20th century artists. These items come to life only thanks to the museum staff, so it would be wise to go on a guided tour of the museum.
PROGRAMMES FOR VISITORS
The Museum of the Silver Age does not focus solely on poetry, but also on the artistic and cultural developments which occurred during that time. The materials are linked to different ages, social status, and professional groups. The museum offers on-demand tours and themed walk-throughs including “Secrets of V. Bryusov’s HouseRussian: Zagadki doma V.Ya. Bryusova or Загадки дома В.Я. Брюсова” and “The Silver Age Salons and Literary CirclesRussian: Salony i kruzhki Serebryanogo veka or Салоны и кружки Серебряного века”. You can also attend a meeting with people of art and literature as part of the museum’s ongoing project: “Cultural InitiativeRussian: Kulturnaya initsiativa or Культурная инициатива”. There are interesting programmes aimed at students and schoolchildren, i.e. interactive sessions built around the book and magazine covers of the Silver Age, lessons on Symbolism, Akmeism and Futurism, lectures on the works of Akhmatova, BlokRussian poets, Bryusov, and more. For its youngest visitors, the museum has developed an educational programme titled, “Fairytale WeekendRussian: Skazka vykhodnogo dnya or Сказка выходного дня”. This is a series of fun activities designed around the permanent exhibition, including literature and theater workshops. Children who attend these classes get to know a lot about history and literature, learn to use their imagination and creativity, and become immersed into the amazing world of culture.© 2016-2018 moscovery.com