The Museum of Russian Icons

The Museum of Russian Icons The Museum of Russian Icons exhibits one of the world’s largest collections of Russian icons — sacred paintings used for veneration in the Orthodox tradition. With more than 1,000 icons and artifacts it is the largest collection outside of Russia.
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The Museum of Russian Icons inspires the appreciation and study of Russian culture by collecting and exhibiting icons and related objects; igniting the interest of national and international audiences; and offering interactive educational programs. The Museum serves as a leading center for research and scholarship through the Center for Icon Studies and other institutional collaborations. In addition to keeping our Facebook followers informed about exhibitions, programs, news, and events at the Museum of Russian Icons, we post stories, photos, links, and other content related to the diverse and fascinating topic of Russian art and culture. To learn more visit our About section http://museumofrussianicons.org/en/about/the-museum/history-of-the-museum/ or our Frequently Asked Questions section http://museumofrussianicons.org/en/about/the-museum/faq/ on our website.

While on a trip to Russia in 2013, Gordon managed to find the motorcycles. He fit right in, didn't he? #WayBackWednesday
07/29/2020

While on a trip to Russia in 2013, Gordon managed to find the motorcycles. He fit right in, didn't he? #WayBackWednesday

The Nativity of Saint Nicholas is commemorated today (August 11 on the Old Julian calendar). Saint Nicholas was a fourth...
07/29/2020

The Nativity of Saint Nicholas is commemorated today (August 11 on the Old Julian calendar). Saint Nicholas was a fourth-century bishop in what is now Turkey and is one of the most venerated saints in Russia.

Saint Nicholas of Zaraisk with Scenes
16th Century

Did you know the name Red Square has nothing to do with communism or the facades of the buildings? Archaically, the Russ...
07/28/2020

Did you know the name Red Square has nothing to do with communism or the facades of the buildings?
Archaically, the Russian word красная (krasnaya) meant "beautiful", but in contemporary Russian now means "red". #TriviaTuesday

The city of Semenov is located northeast of Moscow in the Volga region. The dolls made here are perhaps the most well-kn...
07/28/2020

The city of Semenov is located northeast of Moscow in the Volga region. The dolls made here are perhaps the most well-known because they were the most common doll produced during the Soviet period. Typical dolls from this region wear bright red dresses and yellow scarves or babushkas which are decorated with the distinctive black fingerprint swirl. Their faces are delicately painted with jet black hair, simple but expressive black eyes, rosy cheeks, and red lips. They hold large bouquets of flowers, often poppies or tulips, which contrast against the natural wood color of their aprons.

Russia’s diversity is one of the most fascinating aspects of the country’s culture, but also one of the least known. Glo...
07/28/2020
Russia’s real face is diverse — and these Gen Z artists want to talk about it

Russia’s diversity is one of the most fascinating aspects of the country’s culture, but also one of the least known. Globally, Russia is often perceived as a homogeneously white country, but in fact, Russia has a long and complicated history of immigration and cultural exchange, with more than 185 recognized nationalities — even if that history is rarely acknowledged by the federal government, or in the country’s mainstream media.

Many outsiders see Russia as a mono-ethnic state, but it has a long, complicated history of immigration and cultural exchange

“It is entirely fitting that we reopen the museum with an exhibition of photographs by our founder whose cultural curios...
07/28/2020
Take 'The Long Way Home' with Museum of Russian Icons founder Gordon Lankton

“It is entirely fitting that we reopen the museum with an exhibition of photographs by our founder whose cultural curiosity, sense of adventure, social entrepreneurship and generous spirit are at the core of our institution,” said The Museum of Russian Icons Executive Director Kent Russell. “We eagerly await welcoming visitors back to our galleries.”

In 1956 Gordon B. Lankton set off by motorcycle from Germany on a 27,000 mile journey across Asia that shaped the character of the man who founded the

This egg-shaped cup and saucer by St. Petersburg’s Kornilov Brothers Factory would be a delight to use year-round. The h...
07/27/2020

This egg-shaped cup and saucer by St. Petersburg’s Kornilov Brothers Factory would be a delight to use year-round. The handle with a horse’s head was designed by Ivan Galnbek, based on a frequent motif in Russian wood architecture and folk ornament. Galnbek was an extraordinary figure in late Imperial Russia. He was born in Saaremaa, Estonia into a family of Baltic German origin. He went on to study and work in Riga and St. Petersburg. In addition to a lengthy career working as an architect-designer, he was also a curator and librarian at the Hermitage, an ethnographer, a collector of icons and folk art, and an instructor of drawing and design.

Tradition & Opulence: Easter in Imperial Russia, on view now through October 25, 2020. Visit the link in the bio for more information to plan your visit.

Egg-form covered cup with saucer
Kornilov Brothers (firm). Design: Ivan Galnbek
St. Petersburg, Russia, c. 1900
Porcelain
Private collection

Today Greatmartyr and Healer Panteleimon is commemorated (August 9th on the Old Julian calendar). He was born in Roman N...
07/27/2020

Today Greatmartyr and Healer Panteleimon is commemorated (August 9th on the Old Julian calendar). He was born in Roman Nicomedia (modern-day Turkey) into a pagan family. While studying medicine he met Saint Hermolaus, who advised him on the Christian faith and later baptized him. He then chose the name Panteleimon, which means all-merciful. He used his knowledge of medicine and his new faith to heal the sick and poor for no fee and to care for Christian prisoners. This angered Emporer Maximian, who had high hopes for the budding physician. Unwilling to forsake his faith, the enraged Maximian ordered Panteleimon's death.

In this icon you see Saint Panteleimon next to Saint Paraskeva who was commemorated yesterday. This icon was painted in 1911 using fifteenth-century technique and made to mimic the natural aging of icons.

Saints Panteleimon and Paraskeva
1911

On July 26, 1951, during excavations in Novgorod, a Soviet expedition led by Artemiy Artsikhovsky found the first Russia...
07/26/2020

On July 26, 1951, during excavations in Novgorod, a Soviet expedition led by Artemiy Artsikhovsky found the first Russian birch bark writing in a layer dated to c. 1400. Since then, more than 1,000 similar documents were discovered in Staraya Russa, Smolensk, Torzhok, Pskov, Tver, Moscow, Ryazan, and Vologda, although Novgorod remains by far the most prolific source of them. #OnThisDay

Today is the feast day of Holy Virgin Martyr Paraskeva of Rome. (Old Julian calendar feast date is August 8.) Saint Para...
07/26/2020

Today is the feast day of Holy Virgin Martyr Paraskeva of Rome. (Old Julian calendar feast date is August 8.) Saint Paraskeva was born in Rome to Christian parents during the reign of Hadrian (117-138). She was named Paraskeva, which is Greek for Friday, after the day she was born and to commemorate the Crucifixion which also took place on a Friday. Paraskeva spent her life preaching Christianity and converting Pagans. She was arrested several times but released after performing miracles and converting her captors. However, she was unable to escape her last arrest and was condemned to death in 140 AD.

Even today she helps those who call on her in faith. Many miracles have taken place at her tomb including the blind received sight, the lame walked, and barren women gave birth to children.

Saint Paraskeva
c. 1600

Gordon spent a few days in Italy after passing through Germany and Austria. Despite it being a typical rainy November wi...
07/25/2020

Gordon spent a few days in Italy after passing through Germany and Austria. Despite it being a typical rainy November with damp conditions and his bike getting stuck in the mud, he managed to capture this spectacular view in Venice.

Venice, Italy, 1956

A Long Way Home: A photographic journey with Gordon Lankton will be on view now through September 27, 2020.

On July 25, 1984, the Russian Soviet cosmonaut, Svetlana Savitskaya became the first woman to walk in space. This was du...
07/25/2020

On July 25, 1984, the Russian Soviet cosmonaut, Svetlana Savitskaya became the first woman to walk in space. This was during her second space flight, which made her the first woman to fly to space twice. In 1982 she had become the second woman in space. #OnThisDay

The appearance of the delicate, bell-like blossoms of the lily-of-the-valley is one of the most beloved signs of spring ...
07/24/2020

The appearance of the delicate, bell-like blossoms of the lily-of-the-valley is one of the most beloved signs of spring in Northern Russia and Europe. The flower was a favorite of Empress Alexandra Feodorovna; Fabergé, Bolin, and the other Imperial court jewelers created all manner of objects decorated with the tiny white flowers to attract her interest, as well as that of their wealthy and fashionable clientele. This unusual blackened steel, or gunmetal, case with blossoms made of diamonds, pearls, and gold is on view in the Tradition & Opulence: Easter in Imperial Russia exhibition.

Lady's cigarette case
Firm of Fabergé or Bolin
Moscow or St. Petersburg, Russia, c. 1900
Gunmetal (blackened steel), gold, seed pearls, diamonds
Private collection

Today is the feast day of the brothers Boris and Gleb (Old Julian calendar date is August 6). Saints Boris and Gleb rece...
07/24/2020

Today is the feast day of the brothers Boris and Gleb (Old Julian calendar date is August 6). Saints Boris and Gleb received the crown of martyrdom in 1015. They became known as Passion-Bearers since they bravely faced their death in a Christ-like manner.

Saint Nicholas with Martyrs Boris and Gleb
c. 1580

The Russian Nesting (or Matryoshka) doll was born at the end of the 19th century during a time when Russian artists were...
07/23/2020

The Russian Nesting (or Matryoshka) doll was born at the end of the 19th century during a time when Russian artists were shifting their focus from European influence and were instead trying to create works of art that better reflected everyday Russians. This is perhaps why the painter Sergey Malyutin, from the Abramtsevo workshop, designed the first doll to resemble typical Russian peasants. The doll was fabricated by Vasilii Zydochkin from the Children’s Education Workshop in Sergiev Posad. The Matryoshka doll quickly became emblematic of Russian culture when it was exhibited at the Paris World Fair in 1900.

Tower Hill Botanic Garden
07/23/2020

Tower Hill Botanic Garden

This August, members of Discovery Museum, EcoTarium, Old Sturbridge Village, The Museum of Russian Icons, Worcester Art Museum, and Worcester Historical Museum can visit Tower Hill for free when they reserve tickets prior to arrival.
Details: www.towerhillbg.org/planyourvisit

Interesting interview with MoRI's newly appointed curator of collections and exhibitions, Dr. Lana Sloutsky.
07/22/2020
Newton woman named curator at Museum of Russian Icons

Interesting interview with MoRI's newly appointed curator of collections and exhibitions, Dr. Lana Sloutsky.

Newton resident Dr. Lana Sloutsky, who recently was appointed curator of collections and exhibitions at the Museum of Russian Icons in Clinton, is eager

Today is the feast day of St. Mary Magdanele, Equal of the Apostles and myrrh-bearer. (For those who use the Old Julian ...
07/22/2020

Today is the feast day of St. Mary Magdanele, Equal of the Apostles and myrrh-bearer. (For those who use the Old Julian calendar, her feast day will be August 4.) Little is written about Mary but she is often confused with other women of the New Testament, like Mary of Bethany. Saints are given the title of Equal of the Apostles for outstanding service in spreading the word of Christianity, comparable to that of the original apostles. The title of myrrh-bearer refers to one of the women who were present at Christ's passion and went to the tomb to anoint the body of Jesus.

Mary Magdalene
c. 1890

Sophia means wisdom in the Greek language. Sophia is regarded as the personification of the wisdom of God, rather than a...
07/22/2020

Sophia means wisdom in the Greek language. Sophia is regarded as the personification of the wisdom of God, rather than an actual person. In this icon, Sophia is portrayed as a female winged figure bearing a scepter and seated on a curved throne. On her right, the Mother of God holds a circular representation of Christ. On her left, John the Baptist holds a scroll and gives a benediction. At the top, two angels unroll a dark blue band with stars depicting an apocalyptic alter. In the upper center, Christ the Pantocrator in a red mandorla extends both hands in a blessing. #WisdomWednesday

Sophia, Wisdom of God
c. 1625

For centuries, these majestic fortifications protected the country from enemies. Today, they’re open-air museums, remind...
07/21/2020
7 fascinating Russian island fortresses (PHOTOS)

For centuries, these majestic fortifications protected the country from enemies. Today, they’re open-air museums, reminding everyone of their past glory.

For centuries, these majestic fortifications protected the country from enemies. Today, they’re open-air museums, reminding everyone of their past glory.

Did you know? In 2004, Pope John Paul II gave back a Mother of God of Kazan icon to the Russian Orthodox Church. The han...
07/21/2020

Did you know? In 2004, Pope John Paul II gave back a Mother of God of Kazan icon to the Russian Orthodox Church. The handover symbolizes closer relations between Catholicism and Orthodoxy. The icon was a late 17th-early 18th-century copy of the Mother of God of Kazan, and it was housed in Fátima, Portugal from 1970 to 1993. After that, it resided in the study of Saint Pope John Paul II in the Vatican from 1993 to 2004 before it was returned to Kazan, where it is now kept in the Kazan Monastery of the Theotokos. Copies of the image are also venerated in the Catholic Church. #TuesdayTrivia

The unicorn is an allegorical representation of Christ and is often depicted with a young maiden who represents his moth...
07/20/2020

The unicorn is an allegorical representation of Christ and is often depicted with a young maiden who represents his mother, Mary. Both the unicorn and the maiden symbolizes purity and chastity. However, unicorns are very rarely featured in Orthodox iconography and are most common in Western art from the Middle Ages. Although, the Museum has one icon that includes the mythical beast.

Scenes from the Life of John the Baptist
c. 1750

Another great weekend here at MoRI! Thank you everyone who came to visit during our first weekend open to the public.
07/19/2020

Another great weekend here at MoRI! Thank you everyone who came to visit during our first weekend open to the public.

"It is one of the largest in Asia and an inspiring sight. Red sandstone with white marble domes - an enormous thing. Cli...
07/19/2020

"It is one of the largest in Asia and an inspiring sight. Red sandstone with white marble domes - an enormous thing. Climbed one of the minarets and got a good view of all of the city. It was spectacular in the sunlight and blue sky. Prayer session in progress and the hundreds of brightly colored gowns bowing in unison was a wonderful sight to behold."

This is another excerpt from Gordon's journal, describing the Badshahi Mosque in Lahore, Pakistan. The two photos are also from Gordon's trip, although they did not make it into The Long Way Home exhibition.

#TheLongWayHome #FounderStories #MuseumFounder

The peacock that we all recognize originates in India, where it is associated with the Hindu deity of patience, compassi...
07/18/2020

The peacock that we all recognize originates in India, where it is associated with the Hindu deity of patience, compassion, good luck, and benevolence. Early representations of this bird have been seen in the ancient art of Persia, Egypt, Greece, Rome, and Byzantium. The peacock is also known to represent springtime renewal and life everlasting. This is why the peacock motif is often seen at Easter time as a symbol of the resurrection. In the Tradition and Opulence exhibition, there are few peacocks to find, and some are harder to spot than others.

Coin purse
c. 1905
Metal, beads
From a private collection, New York, NY

Today is #NationalCaviarDay! Be honest, did we go heavy handed on these blini bites?
07/18/2020

Today is #NationalCaviarDay! Be honest, did we go heavy handed on these blini bites?

The weather outside is stormy, but the Visitor Services staff is excited to welcome back our first nonmember guests! We ...
07/17/2020

The weather outside is stormy, but the Visitor Services staff is excited to welcome back our first nonmember guests! We have completely redesigned the main galleries, and have two amazing temporary exhibitions on view--Tradition & Opulence: Easter in Imperial Russia, and The Long Way Home: A photographic journey with Gordon Lankton. Call the Museum for your reservation: 978.598.5000.

Hodegetria Mother of God in egg-shaped frame
Firm of Feodor Rückert
Moscow, Russia, 1899-1908
Oil on zinc, gilded silver, enamel
Collection of Duchanka Keane

Photograph by Gordon Lankton, New Delhi,, India, 1956

In less than 24 hours, we will be officially open to the public (with new hours and rules). There are two amazing specia...
07/16/2020

In less than 24 hours, we will be officially open to the public (with new hours and rules). There are two amazing special exhibitions to check out as well as the redesign of the main gallery on the upper level. Please visit our website for more information. museumofrussianicons.org

The Week c. 1700  "Looking at this icon reminds me of the passage of time: the day, the week, the month, and the year at...
07/16/2020

The Week
c. 1700

"Looking at this icon reminds me of the passage of time: the day, the week, the month, and the year at a glance. The repetition of temple entrances creates movement throughout and the use of the gridded floor creates depth tying together each day. I am particularly drawn to The Annunciation in this icon. Here Archangel Gabriel floats in on a cloud. Mary’s hands are outstretched and her face belies her acceptance."

This is another throwback from the From the Vault: Staff Favorites exhibition. Lise Graham, Visitor Services & Membership Coordinator, is a painter and MassArt alumni. It's her keen eye and proficient visual language that enables her to internalize the art and better communicate the character of the icon. It's no wonder that visitors enjoy discussing art with Lise during their visit.

On July 15, 2003, a Russian-Belgian paleontological expedition uncovered the fossilized remains of an Olorotitan, a larg...
07/15/2020

On July 15, 2003, a Russian-Belgian paleontological expedition uncovered the fossilized remains of an Olorotitan, a large duck-billed herbivorous dinosaur. Olorotitan was formally named and described in 2003, after the discovery of the nearly complete specimen eroding out of the banks of Amur River in the far southeast of Russia. Olorotitan lived during the Cretaceous period.
#OnThisDay

Last year, at this time, we had the pleasure of housing the Wrestling with Angels: Icons from the Prosopon School of Ico...
07/14/2020

Last year, at this time, we had the pleasure of housing the Wrestling with Angels: Icons from the Prosopon School of Iconology and Iconography exhibition. The WWA exhibition was assembled by the iconographer, Prosopon School instructor, and collector Lynette Hull. Lynette will be the speaker for this coming Saturday's zoom webinar, Icons in the Time of Trouble. https://bit.ly/38Wo0wX

07/14/2020

The Museum will be open to the public starting this weekend with limited days and timed ticketing. However, going forward we will still offer virtual programs and webinars. Not everyone is ready to venture out, and we completely understand that! Members can take advantage of free access to webinars and discounted prices on virtual programs if a fee applies. Visit the Museum's website for more information. www.museumofrussianicons.org

Address

203 Union St
Clinton, MA
01510

Opening Hours

Tuesday 11:00 - 16:00
Wednesday 11:00 - 16:00
Thursday 11:00 - 16:00
Friday 11:00 - 16:00
Saturday 11:00 - 17:00
Sunday 11:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(978) 598-5000

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The Museum of Russian Icons inspires the appreciation and study of Russian culture by collecting and exhibiting one of the world’s largest collections of Russian icons — sacred paintings used for veneration in the Orthodox tradition. With more than 1,000 icons and related artifacts spanning six centuries, the Museum offers a unique and personalized experience rich with art, history, and culture. It serves as a leading center for research and scholarship through the Center for Icon Studies and other institutional collaborations. In addition to keeping our Facebook followers informed about exhibitions, programs, news, and events at the Museum of Russian Icons, we post stories, photos, links, and other content related to the diverse and fascinating topic of Russian art and culture. Hours and admission pricing can be found under the Visit tab on the Museum website: http://www.museumofrussianicons.org/hour-admissions/. The Current Exhibit schedule can be found here: http://www.museumofrussianicons.org/current-exhibitions/.

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Comments

Wow! So apparently GAUGN Государственный академический университет гуманитарных наук has opened one semester long intensive courses in Russian studies but very few people know about that! I want to help them to change that. http://int.gaugn.ru/rs So if you're interested to know more about Russia, its history, philosophy, literature, economy and mooooooore, go check them out.
Can you share again the story of why St. Nicholas has 2 holidays? Thanks
Here is another fascinating article from Icons and Their Interpretation on one of our icons.
Icon workshop 2019
Photo of Nicholas II and his family. Exhibition of Romanov photos in Prague.
Photo of Nicholas II and his family. Exhibition in Prague.
For anyone who has any interest in Russian Icons or loves museums this is an amazing experience! I just discovered this museum while visiting a friend who lives nearby. Clinton, Mass. is a small town with an interesting history and the story of the Museum's founding is a good one. If you are ever going nearby on your way to or from Maine, make a detour...you won't regret it. Too much to take in in one visit.
attended free fun friday last week - it was awesome!
If you never visited The Museum of Russian Icon, You should !!!!!!! You will impressed.....
Do I need to buy advance tickets for Popcorn Sermon #1: On the Waterfront???
If you are in the Boston area March 23-25 please join us...