In the Pushkin Museum burned the most valuable

The fire, which occurred on November 3 in the Museum of personal collections GMII im. Pushkin (Volkhonka, 10), damaged the Museum building in the immediate vicinity of the accounting Department. This Department collects, updates and stores all the information about the Museum’s collections and is essentially the “brain” of one of the largest in Moscow Museum “conglomerates”. Now employees of Department are engaged in the rescue of the documentation; in fact, only depends on them, will survive the Pushkin Museum as a coherent scientific structure.


photo: Kirill Iskoldsky

About the fire at Volkhonka, 10 firefighters were out in the middle of the day on 3 November. The area of the fire, which was extinguished 15 MOE calculations, amounted to only 40 square meters, but to completely destroy the fire spreading into smoldering slabs, had to spend a few hours.

During a fire, as told “MK” the staff of the Pushkin Museum, from the building of the Museum of private collections was evacuated about 30 people – curators, research staff, and “staff” of the Department of accounting. Visitors in the building now does not happen – in connection with the repair and reconstruction of several buildings of the Museum complex site in Volkhonka, 10 temporarily turned, in fact, in obselesence storage. If during the fire there were visitors, it could be worse. But now the damage to the Museum can be quite significant, according to staff.

Accounting and control

– This is – the “brain” of the entire Museum, without exaggeration – says “MK” researcher of the Museum. – It stores all the information about the collection, the reference inventory books, where everything is brought together as follows. It’s all about storing documents. It is the employees of the accounting Department carry out inspections and inventory of all funds and storage, put in order the inventory of the vaults.

Now the accounting Department is one of the youngest (in terms of age of employees) and strong structures in the Pushkin Museum, said the interlocutor of “MK”. Therefore, the chances of saving documentation Department is quite large. But if the worst thing happened, and the paperwork was lost – the consequences for the Museum will be devastating. Devoid of the structural inventory of the store, the Pushkin Museum will actually break up into separate collections, of which all will know only their immediate guardians.

The consequences of a fire are compounded by the fact that just over the accounting Department firefighters were ripped off the roof to “shed” overlap, said “MK” another employee of the Museum, which was on November 3. Assess the damage is not yet possible.

May be repeated

In addition to the threats of the documentation of Department of the account of the fire in the Pushkin Museum November 3 – this is a warning about the sorry state of the entire complex of buildings, said the interlocutor of “MK” from the staff of the Museum. In the era of the directorship of Irina Antonova, according to him, the Museum was very ambitious expansion plans, but the repair and reconstruction of engineering networks and the existing buildings had received little attention. As a result, in our days, despite the dedicated work of the engineering service, occasional scandalous incidents – for example, the water pipe leaks that threaten to damage the exhibits and funds. But, as all had a reason to make November 3, the leak – not the worst that can happen in the buildings of the Museum.

– Now a Museum in the sense of a condition of engineering communications is in a low point in their history – summarizes the employee of the Museum. – We can only pray that most were completed construction projects and has come to the place of repair of worn main buildings.

Note that now simultaneously under construction Depository of the Pushkin Museum, the reconstruction of the house 8 at the Small Znamensky lane and the former Institute of philosophy, RAS (Volkhonka, 16). After the reconstruction of both historic buildings will be open to visitors. Only after that – roughly in 2020, according to the plans of the Museum administration – it is planned to start works in the main Museum building, which opened in 1912.

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