MIL OSI Translation. Region: Russian Federation –
Shops, banks, a printing house and an antique salon worked here. Thanks to original drawings of the 19th century, the building was restored to its historical appearance.
The Tretyakov brothers’ apartment house is a building in the very center of Moscow, which is almost 130 years old. During this time, the interiors and the purpose of the premises have changed several times. Once there was published the magazine “Russian Bulletin”, then shops, a bank, an antique salon worked. During the Soviet period, the building housed the prosecutor’s office, and also published magazines again. Nowadays, the apartment building has been restored to its historical appearance. Specialists have restored the interior interiors according to 19th century drawings.
Printing house and medical offices
In the middle of the 18th century, at the intersection of Rozhdestvenka and Kuznetsky Most streets, there were stone residential chambers, partly owned by the Volynsky, Vorontsov, and later Beketov families, headed by Platon Beketov, a famous Russian publisher. He organized a printing house here, where D.I. Fonvizin, A.N. Radishcheva, V.A. Zhukovsky and many others.
The complex of buildings survived the Napoleonic invasion already in the status of anatomical offices of the Moscow Medical-Surgical Academy. According to legend, Stendhal stayed in one of the houses in 1812, then not yet a writer, but an officer of the commissary of the French army, who participated in the Napoleonic campaign. In the middle of the 19th century, the academy moved to St. Petersburg, and the buildings housed clinics of Moscow University, where the famous surgeon N.V. Sklifosovsky.
Bank, shops and antique salon
In 1891, the land was bought by the Tretyakov brothers, merchants and patrons. They invite here their brother-in-law, the architect Alexander Kaminsky, the author of the first building of the Tretyakov Gallery. Kaminsky, in place of the stone chambers, is building a house with Russian-style facades, peaked roofs and openwork gratings. The functionality of the building was determined in advance – a tenement house was created here.
Restoration engineer Andrei Filippov, who for a long time studied the history of the construction and architecture of the house of the Tretyakov brothers, says that the interior interiors were in contrast to the facade.
“They were executed in Renaissance and Baroque architecture. The floors in the ceremonial rooms were made of parquet and mosaic, the walls were decorated with rustication, wooden panels, artificial marble panels, and the ceilings were decorated with stucco moldings, ”the expert notes.
In those days Kuznetsky Most had the fame of the most French street in Moscow – a large number of French shops worked there. The merchants needed to store their earnings somewhere, so the right side of the building was occupied by the Lyon Credit Bank – at that time the only foreign institution allowed by the tsarist government to conduct financial operations in Russia. A door with baroque carvings and the inscription: “Offices of special current accounts, letters of credit and fireproof cabinets” has survived to this day.
Another part of the building was occupied by the shop of the Zh. Blok Partnership, which sold various equipment, and the store of the joint-stock partnership of the factory of iron products “Vl. Gostynsky and Co. ” And there was also the Moscow Skiers Club.
In the basement of the apartment building there are storerooms of shops and a bank, a janitor’s and technical rooms. And the safe deposit boxes of the “Lyon Credit” were protected in an unusual way.
“According to legend, the architect of the building, Kaminsky, developed a unique system for protecting bank vaults: the safe deposit boxes in them were hermetically sealed and after a working day were closed and flooded overnight, for which purpose tanks were specially dug to fill and drain water into the Neglinka,” says Andrey Filippov.
According to him, the second floor of the building was occupied by offices and service premises, and the third – by residential apartments. It is known that the famous Moscow photographers K.A. Fischer and A.F. Eichenwald.
In 1908, the J. Blok Partnership moved to Myasnitskaya Street, and the vacated premises were occupied by the art salon-store “I. Datsiaro. ” For his needs, huge showcases were made, where reproductions, paintings, postcards, prints, drawing supplies and much more were exhibited daily.
Prosecutor’s office and hairdresser
After the 1917 revolution, private property was nationalized, the activities of the Lyon Credit Bank in Russia ceased, and shops were closed. The building houses the People’s Commissariat of Justice.
In 1925-1926, the building was renovated to adapt the premises to the needs of the People’s Commissariat: old partitions were dismantled and new partitions were installed, new door and window openings were punched. At one time, together with the People’s Commissariat, the editorial boards of the magazines “October” and “ROST” worked there.
In the second half of the last century, the former tenement house housed the prosecutor’s office, and in the late Soviet era – a hairdressing salon. At the end of the 20th century, the building was occupied by the General Prosecutor’s Office of the Russian Federation.
“By this time, the condition of the building had deteriorated. The facades were never cleaned, they were not subjected to even minimal washing, roof leaks began, the crown cornice was destroyed. In the course of numerous minor repairs, the original interior layout was distorted, the artistic decoration of the interiors suffered greatly: the mosaic floors were poured with concrete, and the stucco moldings were knocked down, ”says Andrey Filippov.
Freezing of the walls, the presence of a sauna in the basement in the 1990s, and the lack of ventilation led to damage to building materials and numerous cracks.
Bank and modern office space again
In 2007 with the participation Department of Cultural Heritage of Moscowit was decided to start the historic restoration, which was completed four years later.
Experts have strengthened the foundations of the building, reinforced the walls with brickwork and waterproofing in the basement. The facades were restored to their original appearance with all the peculiarities of the author’s design – according to Kaminsky’s drawings. The openwork lattice of the roof fences was restored. The original steel figured gate in the passable arch was also restored, and the front door at the end was recreated according to the author’s drawings.
Inside the building, fragments of the original mosaic floors were found with artistic inserts of floral ornaments. A 16-square-meter floor area was assembled from separate parts, which was mounted in the hallway. The rest of the floors were also restored on its basis.
The oak panels in the premises occupied by the Lyon Credit Bank were recreated from the surviving fragments, and the upholstery was replaced with ornamented tapestry wallpaper. They were produced at the Zuber factory in Lyon using traditional technology on antique wooden tablets. In addition, the oak doors and the main staircase from cast iron with natural marble railings were restored.
“During the restoration, experts have established that the chandeliers that were at that time in the lobby of the former bank are the same age as the building itself. However, they did not belong to the original interior, they did not correspond to the size of the room at all. They appeared here while they were in the building of the Prosecutor’s Office of the RSFSR, and one of the chandeliers was dated by experts in 1892 for the possible authorship of the outstanding architect Benois, ”says Andrei Filippov.
After the restoration, the lighting fixtures were placed in the premises of the former I. Datsiaro. “
After the completion of the work, the building was restored to its original appearance. Until recently, a bank was located there, like more than a hundred years ago, but now office and retail space is waiting for new tenants.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.