Art is divine

Strokes of genius

Alessandra Cenna




February 2 to May 12, 2019


Pushkin Museum

Five hundred years of Master drawings

Henri Matisse (The Cateau-Cambrésis 1869-1954, Nice) Dance, Composition No. I, 1909 Pen and black ink, watercolor

221 X 320 mm Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow © H. Matisse Succession

Robert Delaunay (Paris 1885 - 1941 Montpellier), The Cardiff Team, 1922-1923

Gouache and watercolor on a graphite plot, 710 × 523 mm

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow

François Boucher (Paris 1703 - 1770 Paris), Young woman asleep, around 1758-1760

Black chalk, sanguine, heightened with white chalk and pastel on brown paper, 271 × 420 mm

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow

Albrecht Dürer

(Nuremberg 1471 - 1528 Nuremberg),

Putti dancers and musicians, with an antique trophy, 1495

Pen and black ink, 271 × 314 mm

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow

Paul Signac (Paris 1863 - 1935 Paris), La Turballe, 1930

Watercolor on a black pencil line, 287 × 441 mm

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow

Peter Paul Rubens

(Siegen 1577 - 1640 Antwerp),

Centaur defeated by Love, 1605-1608

Black stone, 463 × 397 mm

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow








The Custodia Foundation, "house of art on paper," is located in a magnificent Parisian mansion of the eighteenth century. It presents a major retrospective of masterpieces from the collection of drawings of the Pushkin Museum.


A remarkable selection of more than 200 sheets of great masters, never shown in Europe, made the trip from Moscow to Paris. This rare privilege gives visitors the opportunity to discover works from European and Russian schools from the 15th to the 20th century.

Vassily Kandinsky (Moscow 1866 - 1944 Neuilly-sur-Seine),

Composition E, circa 1915 Pen and black ink, gray wash, watercolor, 227 × 340 mm

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow

From the German and Italian Renaissance to the avant-gardes of the 20th century, the pictorial journey led to the discovery of watercolors and old prints on the first floor, while the lower rooms welcomed modern acquisitions.


The drawings of the Italian and French masters are nobly represented to bear witness to classical art with Vittore Carpaccio, Veronese, Nicolas Poussin...


But the Dutch drawings of the golden age of Rembrandt, Van Goyen and those of the great Flemish Rubens dominate the first part of the exhibition.


The gallant taste of the Enlightenment is neatly represented by the subtle drawings of Watteau, Jacques Louis David and Italian Tiepolo.


The German Romanticism stands out with the great modernity of the two men at the seaside of Caspar David Friedrich.


The wonders of the great masters Ingres, Corot, Delacroix precede their famous successors from Renoir to Lautrec via Degas and Van Gogh. The latter is illustrated in this place only by a single drawing of a young woman.



The great names of Impressionism and Post-Impressionism, as well as the movements of the European and Russian avant-gardes of the first half of the twentieth century, make the second part of the exhibition shine.


Matisse, Picasso, Delaunay, Klee and Signac often drew the preparatory projects of their large canvases and competed for talent in this field.

Francesco Mazzola, called Parmigianino (Parma 1503 - 1540 Casal Maggiore), Studies of Heads, 1525-1527

Sanguine, 198 × 135 mm

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow

Kasimir Malevich

(Kiev 1878 - 1935 Leningrad),

Children in a meadow, 1908

Graphite and gouache, 190 × 177 mm

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow

Vincent Van Gogh

(Groot Zundert 1853 - 1890 Auvers-sur-Oise),

Portrait of a young woman (La Mousmé), 1888

Metal feather, reed feather and black ink, on a graphite plot, 325 × 245 mm

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow






Contour of black pencil, pen and ink or white chalk, adorned with charcoal or pastels, women are always honored in portraits full of strength and delicacy.


Pushkin Museum requires, the great lords of Russian art are of course in the spotlight alongside their fellow Europeans.

Chagall, Tatline, Kandinsky and Malevitch testify to the important role of Soviet art in the 1920s.


500 years of history and talent contemplate the eyes of the 21st century marveled by so much grace and timeless modernity in its beauty.


A unique way to open the doors of the Pushkin Museum to have the irresistible desire to visit and admire all its treasures...





Fondation Custodia Paris from February 2 to May 12, 2019


Caspar David Friedrich (Greifswald 1774 - 1840 Dresden),

Two men at the seaside, 1830-1835

Black chalk, pen and brown ink, brown wash (sepia), 234 × 351 mm

Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow