Autumn in Moscow Museums and Galleries

Lee Jinju: Tilted Tilted is a rare exhibition of a South Korean artist in Moscow, all the more special because she made this series of works especially for the exhibition at the Triumph Gallery. Her works can be defined as subjective realism or psycholandscapes, they are like painted streams of consciousness. In her works Jinju employs…

St. Petersburg Celebrates Autumn

St. Petersburg is kicking off the fall art and culture season with something for everyone, from Chinese lanterns to a retrospective of one of Russia’s greatest artists. Art Weekend: Oct. 5 and 6 Explore the best of St. Petersburg’s galleries and exhibitions in a weekend entirely devoted to contemporary art. Art Weekend will involve more…

Traditional Recipes Recreated With Flair

At Ruski, the chef likes to mix things up a bit, sometimes preparing traditional recipes authentically, sometimes recreating them with modern flair. Sugudai is a traditional northern dish made of fresh, uncooked fish such as salmon, dressed with oil, vinegar or other acidic ingredient, green onions, fresh herbs and salt and pepper. Here it is…

‘Circle of Light’ Shines Bright in Moscow

From Sept. 20 – 24, Moscow’s annual “Circle of Light” festival lights up the capital with dazzling displays of art, history, playful projections and more. Light designers and multimedia artists from around the world had the chance to reimagine the Russian capital’s iconic architecture for the festival, incorporating not just light, but also flame, lasers…

On This Day Sergei Ozhegov Was Born

On this day in 1900 Sergei Ozhegov, the writer of one of the first Russian dictionaries, was born. Born in Kamennoe village in the Tver region, Ozhegov is celebrated for his “Dictionary of the Russian Language,” which remains the most widely used reference for the Russian language today, especially for writers, journalists and interpreters. The…

Russia’s Love Affair With India

When Ponnuchamy Jeevanantham first came to Moscow from Tamil Nadu in southern India in 1987 to study agriculture at the Peoples’ Friendship University he was dismayed by how mild Russian food was compared to Indian cuisine.  “You couldn’t find any spices,” he said. “There were bay leaves, black pepper and maybe some chilli powder —…

Zaryadye Concert Hall Gets New Organ

Now that summer is over, Moscow’s concert halls are opening their doors to the new season. Zaryadye Concert Hall, Moscow’s shiny newcomer to a crowded field, opened its doors last year to much fanfare, with performers gushing over its state-of-the-art acoustics and edgy design. To keep up the momentum, this year the Zaryadye directors said…

On This Day Alexander Rosenbaum Was Born

Alexander Rosenbaum was born into a medical family in Leningrad on Sept. 13, 1951. He qualified as a doctor, but became one of Russia’s most famous bards, or singing poets, best known for his so-called blatnaya pesnya songs about criminal subculture.  His most popular songs are “Gop-Stop,” about two gangsters executing an unfaithful lover, and…

‘Putin’s Hybrid War and the Jews’

Award-winning journalist Sam Sokol is the author of “Putin’s Hybrid War and the Jews,” a book covering the tragic fate of the Jewish communities in Ukraine since the 2013 Euromaidan revolution, the annexation of Crimea and war in the Donbass. As a reporter for the Jerusalem Post covering European diasporas, Sokol was ideally placed to…

Mongolia Welcomes Putin With Military Pomp, Vivid Performances

President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday referred to relations between Russia and Mongolia as “brotherly” during his visit to Mongolia’s capital, Ulaanbaatar. And just as brothers do, Mongolian President Khaltmaagiin Battulga welcomed his Russian counterpart with an elaborate ceremony before negotiations began. The country’s State Honor Guard and an orchestra lined up to welcome Putin at…

On This Day Space Dogs Flew a Mission

On Aug. 27, 1958, the Soviet Union launched the dogs Pyostrya and Belyanka into space. The craft, a R-5A rocket, set a new record in terms of weight-to-height ratio, as it reached 453 kilometers above the earth’s surface at a weight of over 1,500 kilograms. The dogs safely returned to earth following the flight. Between…

On This Day Ivan the Terrible Was Born

Ivan Vasilevich, more commonly known as Ivan the Terrible or Ivan IV, was born on Aug. 25, 1530 in Kolomenskoye, Moscow. The grandson of Ivan the Great, he acquired huge amounts of land during his reign, transforming a Grand Duchy into a Tsardom. Through this, however, he imposed a reign of terror and exhibited uncontrollable…

Art Patron Mikhail Abramov, Dead at 55

On Aug. 20 collector and art patron Mikhail Abramov was killed in an accident near Peloponnes, Greece on his way to the international airport and a flight to Moscow. The helicopter he was in crashed into the sea, killing Abramov, another passenger and the pilot. Abramov was a businessman and collector of ancient Christian art…

Sailing Into the Past in Lipetsk

Flags flutter above linen tents, musicians play ancient melodies on old musical instruments, craftsmen peddle their wares… This might look like the film set for the latest television series, but it’s actually a historical reenactment festival called Ladeinoye Pole that has been held every year since 2007 in the Lipetsk region, about 500 kilometers to…

Dmitri Shostakovich, Football Fanatic

Dmitri Shostakovich was one of the 20th century’s most celebrated and prolific composers, whose symphonies, concerti, string quartets and dozens of other works became the musical backdrop for several generations of Soviet citizens. A slim man in thick glasses, Shostakovich was fastidious, diffident, and orderly, the very image of an intellectual composer. But Dmitri Shostakovich…

Russia’s Good Year at the Awards

Despite concerns over censorship, the film and performing arts in Russia remain largely free of government interference. While the government can certainly impact the film industry and theater through funding and sometimes, with film, by withholding screening permits, there are many independent companies that can produce whatever they want. Now that the awards season for…

Moscow Art Group Takes St. Petersburg By Storm

In late July, the internationally acclaimed art group AES + F launched a new exhibition, “Predictions and Revelations,” featuring eight of their biggest projects from the last two decades. The eye needs time to adjust before it can take in the enormous digital collage installation that greets the visitor to the exhibition “Predictions and Revelations”…

On This Day: The Kursk Submarine Disaster

On Aug. 12, 2000, the nuclear submarine Kursk sank, killing all on board: 118 crew members.  President Vladimir Putin, then in his first term as president, was faced with intense criticism over his handling of his first national disaster.  The catastrophe took place in the Barents Sea on the first Russian naval annual exercise that…

Russia’s Muslims Celebrate Kurban Bairam

Muslims in Russia celebrated the religious holiday of Kurban Bairam, or Eid al-Adha, on Sunday. The holiday, whose name means “Festival of the Sacrifice,” commemorates the prophet Ibrahim’s willingness to sacrifice his son in obedience to God. During the festival of Kurban Bairam, considered one of the holiest days in the Islamic calendar, large groups…

Last Gasp Moscow Music Festivals

By the calendar it’s still summer, but the weather is decidedly autumnal. All that means is that you have all the more reason to party! The second half of August is simply packed with small (and not so small) festivals and concerts that you should definitely see if you happen to be in the Russian…

Fabergé and the Link of Times

No object is as synonymous with Romanov Russia as a Fabergé imperial Easter egg. Each of the fifty eggs commissioned by the last Russian tsars is intricate, flawless, and unique. Gleaming and glittering behind bullet-proof glass in well-fortified museums, they are vibrant talismans of the lost sepia-colored world of the Romanovs. Of the fifty imperial…