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In 2020, eight new statues, monuments and commemorative signs were installed in the capital.

Even during the period of restrictions associated with the coronavirus pandemic, work continued in the capital to perpetuate the memory of prominent figures of the past and significant events in history. Eight new statues, monuments and commemorative signs were installed in Moscow over the past year. On the International Day of Monuments and Historic Sites, we will talk about what structures have appeared in the capital.

Monument to Railwaymen – Participants of the Great Patriotic War

The monument to the railway workers – participants of the Great Patriotic War was opened last summer for the professional holiday of the railway workers. This composition of five figures – a symbol of the unity of the front and rear – is installed on the territory of the park on Komsomolskaya Square, at the intersection of the main railway lines.

At the base of the monument, there are five statues on a granite platform. Each of them represents the profession of a railway worker, including a machinist, a woman track fitter, a road manager, a switchman and a road foreman. The figures are arranged in a semicircle, and behind them the Order of Victory rises. On four sides of it there are relief images of repair work on the railway, as well as armored trains and steam locomotives. On the monument itself, you can see the inscription – the words of the commander and Marshal of the Soviet Union Georgy Zhukov: “Without the feat of the railroad workers there would not have been our Victory …”. The author of the monument is a sculptor, teacher, professor, People’s Artist of Russia and a member of the Union of Artists of the USSR Salavat Shcherbakov.

Monument to the head of the USSR nuclear industry Yefim Slavsky

Another monument, erected in Moscow last summer, is a monument to the head of the national nuclear industry and three times Hero of Socialist Labor, Efim Slavsky. The opening ceremony was timed to coincide with the 75th anniversary of the nuclear industry in Russia. For several years now, the bust of Minister Slavsky has been meeting visitors on the basement staircase inside the main building of the State Atomic Energy Corporation Rosatom. The new monument, created by the sculptor Salavat Shcherbakov, was unveiled in the park near the central building of the state corporation (Bolshaya Ordynka street, building 24).

The minister is depicted in full growth in a three-piece suit with three stars of the Hero of Socialist Labor. The monument is installed on a half-meter granite pedestal.

Efim Slavsky (1898-1991) – Soviet statesman, specialist in the field of nonferrous metallurgy, head of the Soviet atomic industry, three times Hero of Socialist Labor, one of the leaders of the Soviet atomic project, Minister of Medium Machine Building of the USSR, deputy of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR.

Sculptural composition of the Yevgeny Vakhtangov Theater

In September, at 26 Arbat Street, a monument to the director, actor and teacher Yevgeny Vakhtangov was unveiled. The monument was erected in front of the building of the State Academic Theater that bears his name. The bronze composition depicts the director sitting on a dais in front of the curtain. Above his bowed head on the canvas are carved the names of 100 performances that have glorified the theater over the past 100 years, starting with the productions of Yevgeny Vakhtangov himself – “The Miracle of St. Anthony” and “Princess Turandot”. This is the third monument to Yevgeny Vakhtangov in Russia. Its authors are the sculptor People’s Artist of Russia Alexander Rukavishnikov, the chief artist of the Vakhtangov Theater, Honored Artist of Russia Maxim Obrezkov and Honored Architect of Russia Igor Voskresensky.

Evgeny Vakhtangov (1883–1922) – the founder of the theatrical direction of fantastic realism, was born in Vladikavkaz and studied at the Vladikavkaz classical gymnasium. There he participated in amateur drama circles and continued to play on stage, entering Moscow University. In 1911, Evgeny Vakhtangov graduated from drama school and was admitted to the Moscow Art Theater. In 1921, he headed the Moscow Art Theater’s Third Studio, which was later renamed the Yevgeny Vakhtangov Theater.

Monument to the founders of sambo

On the Alley of Sports Glory of the Luzhniki Olympic Complex in December opened memorial to the founders of sambo in Russia. The stone composition immortalizes the names of the coaches of this type of martial arts – Viktor Spiridonov, Vasily Oshchepkov and Anatoly Kharlampiev. In the center of the composition there are figures of wrestlers, one of whom turns the opponent over, performing a throw called “mill”. The duel takes place on a hemisphere through which the Earth’s orbit passes. So the authors depicted the globe, symbolizing the popularity of this struggle throughout the world. In orbit, you can see the motto of martial arts “Sambo is the science of winning”. The founding fathers of sambo are watching the fight.

Victor Spiridonov (1882–1944) created a system of applied wrestling and hand-to-hand combat based on jiu-jitsu. Vasily Oshchepkov (1893–1937) invented the Soviet version of judo. Anatoly Kharlampiev (1906-1979), a student of Vasily Oshchepkov, collected and systematized methods of various types of martial arts. It was thanks to him that sambo as a sports discipline received an official status in the USSR.

The monument is made of bronze and granite. It was created by a team of sculptors led by People’s Artist of Russia Salavat Shcherbakov.

Monument to the founder of the Union of Architects of the USSR Karo Alabyan

Last year, a new monument appeared in Maly Peschaniy Lane next to house 2. It is a granite pedestal with steps on which the Soviet architect and founder of the Union of Architects of the USSR Karo Alabyan stands. In his right hand he holds paper sheets with drawings. The sheets are so long and heavy that the architect has to support them with his foot to prevent them from slipping and falling down. The sculptor, professor, People’s Artist of Russia, member of the Union of Artists of the USSR Georgy Frangulyan, as well as artist and designer Ashot Tatevosyan worked on the creation of this monument.

Karo Halabyan (1897-1959) – Soviet architect, founder of the Union of Architects of the USSR. In 1935 he took part in the development of the general plan for the reconstruction of Moscow. The most famous projects of Alabyan are the building of the Central Academic Theater of the Russian Army and the architectural plan of the pavilion of the Krasnopresnenskaya metro station.

Memorial sign in honor of the division of the Moscow people’s militia

In December 2020, on the eve of the anniversary of the start of the Soviet counteroffensive in the battle of Moscow, a solemn ceremony was held to unveil a memorial sign of the 6th Moscow Rifle Division of the Dzerzhinsky District People’s Militia. The wall with a five-pointed star symbolizes the feat of the workers who, without military training, defended the capital in 1941. The division was joined by about eight thousand people from 170 institutions and enterprises aged 18 to 55 years. Almost none of them had ever held a rifle in their hands before.

The division of the people’s militia of the Dzerzhinsky region was formed at the Moscow Institute of Railway Engineers. It included workers of factories, employees of the USSR People’s Commissariat for Foreign Affairs, students, teachers. The division took part in the construction of the Mozhaisk defense line, fought in the area of ​​Dorogobuzh, Vyazma, Yelnya, and reached East Prussia. The monument is located in the Catherine Park. Its author was the architect Alexandra Voskresenskaya.

Bust to surgeon Viktor Savelyev

In 2020, on the territory of the city clinical hospital No. 1 named after N.I. Pirogov, a bust of the Soviet and Russian surgeon, academician, laureate of the State Prize of the USSR and the State Prize of the Russian Federation Viktor Savelyev was installed. It is made of bronze and sits on a three-part polished granite pedestal. The all-Russian public organization “Russian Society of Surgeons” applied to the Commission on Monumental Art with the initiative to erect a monument to the famous doctor. The authors of the monument are the People’s Artist of Russia, sculptor Andrei Balashov and People’s Architect of the USSR, full member of the Russian Academy of Architecture and Construction Sciences, Honorary Builder of Moscow Viktor Yegerev.

Academician Victor Savelyev (1928–2013) – founder of a scientific school, specialist in the field of angiology, physiology, pathophysiology, and the human cardiovascular system. Achievements in the field of anesthesiology, resuscitation and intensive care are also associated with his name. For more than 30 years, Savelyev served as chief surgeon of the Russian Ministry of Health.

Memorial sign of Archpriest Avvakum

A memorial sign in honor of the 400th anniversary of the birth of the ideologist of the Old Believers, Hieromartyr Avvakum Petrov was installed on the territory of the spiritual center of the Russian Orthodox Old Believer Church (Rogozhsky Poselok Street, Building 29, Building 1).

It is made in the form of a pillar of worship 5.5 meters high. The mosaic pillar depicts Archpriest Avvakum, Boyarina Morozova, Metropolitan Ambrose and Bishop Pavel Kolomensky. The sign was installed in front of the Church of the Resurrection of Christ in the bell tower of the Rogozhskaya community, opposite the Western Gate of the Rogozhskaya Sloboda. It was designed according to the project of Archpriest Leonty Pimenov – the dean of the Old Believer communities of the Moscow region and the rector of the Orekhovo-Zuevsky Old Believer Church of the Nativity of the Most Holy Theotokos. It was he who won the competition for the best appearance of the commemorative sign in 2019. The architect of the building was the teacher, the historian of architecture Artur Tokarev.

Avvakum Petrov – priest, archpriest, writer, author of the monument of Russian literature of the 17th century “The Life of Archpriest Avvakum, written by himself”, a number of polemical works and messages to like-minded people.

International Day of Monuments and Historic Sites has been celebrated since 1984 at the initiative of the Assembly of the International Council for the Protection of Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS).

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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