The Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts is about to get into the 100th year of its existence. The Museum had opened on May 31, 1912 as a Museum of Fine Arts named after Emperor Alexander III under the University of Moscow. Over the years there have been changes as its subordination to the University ceased on May 31, 1923 and the Museum became an autonomous institution. In 1932 its name was changed to be The State Museum of Fine Arts. In 1937 it was renamed in the honor of Alexander Pushkin, the great Russian poet.
In the beginning since the museum was under the university its first director was the head of the department of Theory and History of Art at the Moscow University. Prof. Ivan Tsvetaev was Ph.D. of Roman Arts and Letters. Today the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts consists of 6 buildings. Four of them are located at the Volkhonka st., and the other two are located in other parts of the city. The Volkhonka museum complex consists of the main building, Gallery, Museum of private collections and the Educational Centre. The other two centers in the city are the Educational Art Museum of Casts which is named after Ivan Tsvetaev. The other is Sviatoslav Richter’s Memorial Apartment.
The Pushkin Museum today houses the most representative collection of international art in Russia. They have in their display artwork dated from ancient times to modern days. There are plaster casts of a number of famous ancient, medieval and Renaissance sculptures. There are a lot of original work of major foreign artists and sculptors. There are several important European paintings from the 7th to the 18th century. There are separate collections to acquaint you with the art of 19th and 20th century. It is no doubt one of the most comprehensive museums of art.