MIL OSI Translation. Region: Russian Federation –
Press Service of the Moscow City Overhaul Department
The massive oak doors of the Physics Pavilion were made by special order in 1954. Now their restoration is almost complete, only a few elements remain to be put in order.
The restoration of the entrance doors of pavilion 5 (former pavilion of the Latvian SSR) at VDNKh is nearing completion. They have already been installed at the front entrance to the building. Canvases made of Mongolian oak are inlaid with large polished amber and decorated with carved Latvian ornament of ears, strange flowers and leaves. These doors are a work of decorative and applied art. They were specially made according to the project of the artist V.Ya. Tiltiš to the opening of the pavilion in 1954.
“In general, the doors have been preserved in a satisfactory condition. But there were scuffs and chips on the carvings, on the sashes, traces of the fastening of latches and locks were visible. The baffle board of one of the doors was lost, which protects against mechanical damage. Also, several glazing beads were missing – slats that create edging on the door leaf for carved patterns. The lower part of the doors was partially damaged by moisture and rotted. One of the four unique brass handles has also been lost. The saddest thing is that all the amber jewelry was lost, ”the press service said.
Department of overhaul of the city of Moscow…
First, the experts marked all the carved parts of the doors, and then dismantled them. Due to this, it was possible to partially reduce the weight of the sashes and remove them from the hinges. Then the canvases and carved decor were cleared of the later layers of various impregnations and tints, the cracks were repaired and the losses were filled. The details of the doors, which had suffered from moisture, were replaced with similar ones from Mongolian oak. They were recreated from the surviving samples and archival materials.
“The wood was selected according to the species, texture and color of the preserved parts. Amber elements – large stones and the hammer and sickle emblem – have returned to their former places. They were recreated from archival documents and photographs. Three door handles were preserved in excellent condition, they only needed to be washed from dirt with special gentle compounds. It was decided not to remove the scuffs on them, thereby preserving the plaque of time and emphasizing the authenticity, “added the press service of the department.
It remains to restore and recreate the lost metal plates on the bottom of the door, as well as the fourth handle. Specialists are still working on this.
After the main complex of restoration work, the doors were installed in their original place and covered with a special protective box. It will help prevent contamination while the pavilion’s restoration continues.
Pavilion No. 5 is returned not only to its historical architectural appearance, but also to its original purpose – a museum and exhibition. In the future, the building will house a museum of the urban economy complex. During the work, the restorers will preserve and restore as much as possible the architectural and artistic design of the 1950s both outside and inside the pavilion.
Thus, the painting in the introductory and central halls has already been restored and recreated. These rooms and the arched passages between them were painted for the opening of the exposition of the Latvian SSR in 1954. Paintings with ornaments and geometric patterns with traditional Latvian motifs existed until the 1960s, when the pavilion was redesigned for an exhibition “Physics”… Then one part of the unique decor was painted over, and the other was covered with sheets of plywood.
The Physics Pavilion was built 66 years ago by a team of architects – A.Ya. Aivars, V.I. Zakis and K. Ya. Pluksne. It is located in the very depths of the square of the Baltic republics and occupies a central place in its composition. This is emphasized by the portico with bright majolica inserts.
VDNKh is a unique public space with an 80-year history. The exhibition brings together 49 cultural heritage sites, including historical pavilions and fountains. The total area of VDNKh is over 325 hectares.
In 2014, a large-scale exhibition revival program began. By the decision of Muscovites, it was returned to its historical name – VDNKh (since 1992, the name “All-Russian Exhibition Center” has been used), and specialists have begun to improve the territory, restore the pavilions and landscape masterpieces of the complex. Today, the restoration of 16 objects has already been completed, the repair of facades and interiors of 10 objects has been completed, 23 more are still are in work.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.