STUDIO

 


Studio. Designed by Viktor Gartman. 1873

The Studio was constructed in 1873 under the project of Viktor Gartman (1834–1873) in place of an old Aksakov's cottage, to the south-east of the Manor House.

The one-storey wooden building consists of an annex with a flat roof and the studio with a tent-roof for sculptural studies. The porch at the west side of the building leads to the small hall with the door to the living rooms to the right and the door to the studio in front.

Natural lighting of the studio was carefully thought out: rectangular windows give light from the northern and southern parts and a wide window with a sash door leads into the balcony at the eastern side of the building.

The Studio has no ceiling and the extra light comes from the roof dormers. The porch, the roof, the platbands of the windows and the eaves are richly decorated with wood carving. The Studio is the only building of Viktor Gartman that still exists. It is an example of the "Russian" or rather Pseudo Russian style, one of the trends of the architectural eclecticism characteristic for the second half of the 19th century.

This trend was supported by Ivan Bogomolov, Viktor Gartman, Roman Kuzmin, Ivan Ropet and other famous architects, but views about their works were mixed. Vladimir Stasov, the art historian and critic wrote that "this is the most important, the most talented, the most diverse, the most amazing and the most elegant architecture among all our architectures. It has the real Russian spirit and has more of it than other architects could achieve before...

There are real Russian architectural motifs; they are traditional, developed by people in their peasant houses, found on dishes, utensils and numerous household articles..." The architects of the "Russian" style used motives of folk art, but they joined them mechanically leaving apart their functional purpose. Thus, Gartman decorated the building with carved ornament taken from traditional embroideries. Savva Mamontov in "Chronicle of the place Abramtsevo" mentioned about the Studio with reserve: "The construction was not entirely good because Gartman, having done no drafts, could not come at site himself but entrusted his assistant Gromov with the work, the latter arrived from Moscow and built the house in accord with oral instructions of Gartman..." Viktor Vasnetsov in the letter to Vladimir Stasov wrote more openly: "Tell you frankly: the architecture of Gartman and Ropet seemed unsatisfactory for me".


Studio. Eastern façade

In the Mamontovs' time the Studio witnessed the work of Mark Antokolsky, Viktor Vasnetsov, Ilya Repin, Savva Mamontov who was keen on sculpture while the living rooms in summer were occupied by Valentin Serov and Ilya Ostroukhov. In the 1920s there lived the artist Pyort Konchalovsky with his family.