April 12, 2011

St. Petersburg : The Hermitage

I went to St. Petersburg without knowing anything. Everything was planned by my eldest sister. So her first agenda in St. Petersburg was to visit the Hermitage Museum.

the Alexander Column

According to her, it was going to be the main highlight of the trip as this is one of the most prestigious art museums in the world. With over 3 million works of art representing different ages, countries and people, it is also one of the largest museums in the world.

So large and impressive is the collection of the Hermitage, it is said that if a visitor stood before each work of art for one minute, it would take the visitor 11 years to see the collection in its entirety! O_o

It is wise to purchase the ticket in advance on the museum's website or get in the queue early in the morning. The doors don't open till 10.30am but once they're open, the queue's gonna be endless. 

Come rain or shine, it doesn't deter people from queuing.

the original green and white, gold trimmed Winter Palace

The collections are housed in thousands of rooms across 6 connected buildings. The 6 buildings of the main museum complex are the Winter Palace, the Small Hermitage, the Old Hermitage and the New Hermitage, the Hermitage Theatre and the Reserve House.

The biggest of them all is the Winter Palace; which houses Russian culture, the earliest Eurasian art and culture, European and the French art, Byzantine and the near east art, art of the far east and art of central Asia, and antiquities from Siberia.

Here is also where you can see the grand and luxurious palace interiors. The rooms are amazing and walking from room to room can literally take your breath away. Hey.. this palace was home to the Russian Tsars for over 200 years.

 cloak room

Oh before that, if you wear a jacket or winter coat, leave it in the clock room. It can become rather stifling in the museum. Big bags need to be deposited here too.

Okay now I'm presenting you the HERMITAGE. Be prepared for tons of photos to come but this is only like 0.000001% from the vast 3 million collections of arts in there.

the Small Throne

the Red Throne

The rooms are very beautifully decorated; the floors, the ceilings, the walls and even the slender pieces of decorated wall between mirrors or paintings.

The interior designs were marvelous. There really aren't words to describe the interior beauty of some of the rooms of this palace.

I've told you that there are 6 buildings of the main complex right? Well to make you more confuse on where to start and where to go, the Winter Palace has 3 floors and the others have 2 floors each on the building.

Islamic art

You really need a map of the museum to plan what you wanna see. Fret not, they will give it to you for free after you collect your tickets. But even with a map, I swear we got lost a few times in there since the room and the buildings are interconnected with each other. It's like a maze!

Most people seem to be visiting the painting galleries. They have the collection of paintings from Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Vincent van Gogh, Picasso and many more.

the art gallery

 Memory of the Garden at Etten (Ladies of Arles) by Vincent van Gogh

Dance by Henri Matisse

Portrait of the Actress Jeanne Samary by Pierre-Auguste Renoir

Even though seeing so many world famous paintings at a go was a bit tiresome, I'm so glad we got to see them!

hahaha.. there's a lot of nude paintings here.. that's art yeah?

Pheww... you're still here? Okay last picture I swear.

I saw at least 2 couples doing wedding photo shoot here. Great choice I must say. This place is simply beautiful.

Gosh this place is HUGE man!!! Even if you are not into museums, you can easily spend half a day just walking from one room to the next, marvelling at the architecture. If you are an art lover, plan your visit ahead of time so you can concentrate on the rooms that show works from the periods and regions of greatest interest to you.


Lady of Leisure said...

gosh, the ceiling, wal etc semua very detail kan.. cantik!

rara said...

lady: sangat cantik!