Dr. Sergey Zagraevsky
About “self-repayment” of museums
Published in Russian: Заграевский С.В. О «самоокупаемости» музеев. В справочнике «Единый художественный рейтинг», вып. 4. М., 2001.
The following text was translated from the Russian original by the computer program
and has not yet been edited.
So it can be used only for general introduction.
The need for this conversation is long overdue, but the immediate "catalyst" was a situation which at first glance it seems strange. But only at first glance.
Go have a distance. Even in 1956, "the party and government" decided to equipping unsightly vacant lot opposite the main entrance to the Park of Culture and it was decided to build on the Crimean Val "Arts Park". Development of the project was entrusted to the staff of the studio-school academic Zholtovsky. After his death in 1959 led a team of authors Yuri Sheverdyaev and still alive Nicholas Sukoyan.
Originally planned construction of two buildings: one whole hall under Tretyakov, and the second - under the exhibition halls of the Union of Artists. The second, delivered directly along the axis of the colonnade of the Park of Culture, was to play the role of composite center and outwardly resemble the Kremlin Palace of Congresses.
Why not build a second building - in this respect there are two conflicting versions. According to one of them, it overlaps the so-called "produh" - green wedge formed Neskuchny gardens, parks of culture and reaching almost to the factory "Red October". According to another version, more prosaically: in a separate building just did not have enough money.
In fact, both versions of several uncertain: and produh "has been thoroughly blocked ring, and the State of Soviet Artist" usually helps ... But be that as it may, at the junction of fifties and sixties, it was decided to merge the CHA and the new facilities under the State Tretyakov Gallery the roof, and some by 1962 a large building project was completed. It took two-thirds of the State Tretyakov Gallery and the third - CHA, so we will call it simply - Home.
Moscow River - not the Dnieper, so that it looked a little wider, the House pushed deep into the park. Originally it was planned as the main museum complex in the capital, on the basis of this and all were designed suite of rooms. Note that we package them actively participated MV Alpatov and PD Korin, who was at that time, council members TG.
On the smooth facade of the house will be installed sculptural reliefs, symbolizing the ... no, not the unity of the proletariat and the labor collective farmers, and quite canonical muses. Competition for their manufacture have won brilliant monumentalists Alla Pologova, Tatyana Sokolova and Andrey Vasnetsov. Moreover, the foam were made life-size model was even made to test the installation, but then again something is not "grown together", and again there are two versions: a prose - not enough money, political - have banned the ideologues.
However, paradoxically, the first version is preferable. The fact that Khrushchev put forward the slogan of cheaper construction, effective in the four-floor buildings, led to the fact that the funds be allocated a unique house ... on the basis of standard rates per cubic meter of reinforced concrete structures. Architects have to say thank you very much even for the fact that they are in such tight financial conditions have been able to build a house.
They built a long and painful, and only in 1975, opened CHA. Ten years later, in 1985 - the Tretyakov Gallery. Muscovites will remember the time when on-site halls of the Tretyakov Gallery, which financed the state budget was still only laid the foundation, and the USSR Union, more quickly dispose of the funds hudfonda already brought the construction of its part of the house almost to the roof.
Elevated into a principle of monotonous façade of the house was supposed to set off a stormy green - Park Arts was planned as an analog of the Summer Garden. But the area around the CHA owned (and still belong), Moscow city authorities are in no hurry to invest in improvements of the Union (and later federal) property, and eventually get what we see now. Single trees, lawns, vacant lots interspersed with variegated sculptures, and promising significant place between the House and the river occupied untidy collapse cheap salon painting.
This status quo prevailed in the mid-nineties, until ... And here we turn to our immediate subject.
The fact that about the same time, in the mid-nineties, somewhere in the depths of the Ministry of Culture of Russia, driven to despair by a miserable state funding, ripe slogan: "Museums - self-sufficient!"
What does this mean in practice?
Muscovites will remember an exhibition in the Pushkin Museum "History of the brand« Martini ». How was the museum with the producers of alcoholic beverage, and remained a mystery, but they say - either 25000 dollars, or 100,000, or even more. Do not we look into the pocket of the Pushkin Museum, but the blow to the prestige of this wonderful museum suffered considerable. After that, we are no longer surprised by the "embroidered boot from Yudashkin at the Museum of Private Collections. But that being said, even flowers.
At the State Museum of Oriental was established commercial gallery "Sean", whose main goal is ... examination of things, brought by citizens and organizations to sell to the museum. Yes, the examination for the state museum are not museum workers, and merchants! What this means, how many museum treasures eventually floats "on the side", it is easy to guess. But it is also more flowers.
Berry begins when the commercialization of semi-legality goes into massive hauling. If the museum is self-sustaining, why would an ordinary employee, too, it does not move?
- Steal? - Asked the character of Gorky. - His take? - Was the answer.
The recent theft from the Hermitage paintings of French artist Jérôme known to all. But few people know that in this day protection of the museum was put something like a plan, "Interception", ie all outgoing officers "to inspect". The picture of Jerome is not found, but during the day it was discovered five values handed down from the museum! There are no special sanctions followed. Someone ripped off in time inventory number, and announced that brought the museum's own curiosity (I wonder why?), And now it is now going to take her home. Someone will be fired, but the affair was hushed up ... But multiply-ka 5 to 365 days a year and figure out how every "thinner" a collection of the Hermitage! It turns about 1800 items.
In principle, every museum piece to be enshrined in one way or another custodian, for which he is liable. But at the same Hermitage tens of thousands of exhibits savers do not have. Slightly better situation in other museums - in fact, exhibits many small savers, and the salary of the keeper ... from 2000 to 2500 rubles, that is, from 70 to 90 dollars a month.
Those who raise a hand to throw a stone in the museum staff? Few people. But in the heads of state, scoff at those who retain a great spiritual heritage of Russia, the stones are flying. But their was inaccessible - they are strong and rich, they can decide whether to allocate millions of dollars to build the monument, Tsereteli and personal museums Shilov and Glazunov, or at least a little money to make life easier museum staff. Counting is simple: "just" 10 million dollars (which is the scale of Tsereteli's quite a bit) - 280 million rubles. Can over 100 months (more than eight years) to pay extra 1000 (1000), museum personnel for 2800 rubles - a pay rise in excess of their basic salary.
But no! Officials from the culture of reason is simple and sensible in its own way: the continuously go to pay homage to the state and gordumu, the president and the mayor, reminding of its existence, and to request more funding, we solve'd better museums Self-Sufficiency! We have the same democracy and pluralism, so let him survive as best they can!
And what have the house on the Crimean Val? But with it. Two or three years ago the director of one of the commercial structures are leased from the State Tretyakov Gallery Square, came to lead the Tretyakov Gallery with "initiative": I have alleged there is an investor, let us build up in the courtyard of the hotel, restaurant and office complex!
Anyone with a little bit of a prestigious building in Moscow on such questionable proposals received many, but then a miracle happened. The bureaucratic machine suddenly spun with unprecedented speed. City Hall was declared a closed (and well paid - the city's budget has allocated about 50 thousand dollars) a competition to design the reconstruction of houses had been submitted more than ten options, of which the jury chose four "best" to the statement "the best of the best," the mayor of Moscow.
I emphasize - the mayor of Moscow, despite the fact that the House on a third is owned by a public organization of the CIS (the International Confederation of Unions of Artists), and two-thirds - in the federal property. What does Moscow? The owner of the park around the house? So let the City Council refines the park, promenade, surrounding homes - they really need. But the house is in excellent condition, svezheotremontirovan, why spend money on its renovation?
This "justify" about these words: "... This is one of the most mediocre buildings of the city, which might not be so bad if it had not been so great and would not stand for such a prominent place" (Nikolai Malinin, "Nezavisimaya Gazeta ").
At this Grigory Revzin in Kommersant reasonable objection: "It is not clear what is happening. It is a good, clean modern building. Museum, among other things. No boiler room. Suddenly someone is ripe dissatisfaction - and the most respected wizard quit working. In Moscow, many objects with far more overripe dissatisfaction.
But it is unclear intelligent person in consideration of the moral and aesthetic aspects of the issue. In the context, so to say, service to God. And those who serve Mammon, another system of values, and they all understand something: a chance to earn! It seems to be beneficial to all: and for a hypothetical investor's profits, and for TG "cost recovery", and for the city of profit (hotels, restaurants and offices, in contrast to the museums, paying taxes). And even in social terms seem to be pretty well: how many new jobs for Muscovites and Muscovites, had the good fortune to acquire skills butler, a cook or a waiter. Or another profession, more ancient.
Lost only about art.
Forgot about the fact that none of the projects that have won the contest, does not provide for uninterrupted operation of the State Tretyakov Gallery and the CHA during the reconstruction! Draft Eugene Assa offers a simple oblitsevat house mirror glass and put a turn around the wooden columns, failed - too cheap, it had not paid.
Lost and the fact that the availability of the hotel in the middle of the Tretyakov Gallery creates an atmosphere that is fundamentally different from the temple. Yes, it's not just empty words! Art - a temple, and visit the museum - a kind of ritual. That is how his childhood and takes most people. And merchants from the temple had been expelled two thousand years ago. However, attempts to return, they never leave, and the proof of that - an absurd and criminal museums offer "pay for themselves".
Lost and the fact that today the State Tretyakov Gallery exhibition "Art of the twentieth century" - the best in Russia. If you want the pride of the country. Of course, if the courtyard will go a large construction project, the exhibition will close - the noise, dust ... What the viewer will get in return? Exposition chaotic Museum of Contemporary Art at Petrovka, 25, to which neither the subway can not get, nor the car not priparkuesh? Maybe the new Museum of the Academy of Fine Arts in Prechistenka, 19, still more indigestible, and sense of exposition, and in terms of transport?
Lost and the fact that the closure of CDH and does turn into a tragedy. Today it is the only one in Moscow (and Russia) Exhibition Centre of Contemporary Art, where the mass audience and go to the cashier stand in long queues. Accordingly, the artist has the opportunity to exhibit in CHA with great efficiency. Organization of the exhibition is expensive? Yes, but remember if the artists and those in power that three years ago, CHA has been deprived of all privileges of a utility bill, for example, a neighboring GTG pay several times less? Is this situation can be called normal? Maybe it's better to do it, and not spend budget money to the reconstruction projects that the reconstruction does not need?
But the artist in Moscow and the federal government attitude is even more dismissive than to the museum workers. The latter - although third-best, but still civil servants, and the artist - all by itself. At breakeven, so to speak.
However, all of the above can "refute": this is what our government does not like artists? Vaughn Tsereteli, Shilov and Glazunov pump millions of dollars from the budget! And the rest - let them write for the needs of power, you see, and that something perepadet!
In these terrible grip - on the one hand the market, on the other semi-official - the art of doing nothing. Until recently, the chance of survival given the true creators of museums, but they have now, it means "self-sufficiency. So, in place of the house on the Crimean Val will rise office and hotel complex, and will hang around the abandoned remnants of the exhibition halls, in which during the reconstruction of the audience, of course, the road will be forgotten.
At the Navy has a team: "to save on power." It is given to the captain when the ship is sinking, and all the boats in the battle defeated. In fact, such a command given by the Russian government Russian art. Not too soon?
© Sergey Zagraevsky