The Public Museum by name of Nicholas Konstantinovich Roerich, part of the International Center of the Roerichs, is located in the very heart of Moscow, on the territory of the historical Lopukhin Manor. It hardly resembles other art museums and galleries. Its history and its fate is as unique as unique and unusual was the life of the man, by whom it is named.
The initiative to create the country’s first cultural institution of a new type, the public Museum by name of Nicholas Roerich, belongs to Svetoslav Nikolaevich Roerich, a great artist, thinker, versatile scientist, talented pedagogue and famous public figure.
The founders of the International Center of the Roerichs, which served as the basis for the public Museum by name of Nicholas Roerich, were:
Svetoslav Roerich (1904-1993), an outstanding artist, scientist and public figure, citizen of India. Svetoslav Roerich painted amazing portraits of Nicholas and Elena Roerich, portraits of Nehru, depicted the life of ordinary Indian inhabitants. His artistic skills were brought to high perfection. His pictures found a worthy place in the treasury of masterpieces of World Art.
Lyudmila Vasilevna Shaposhnikova (1926-2015), scientist, indologist, writer, member of the Russian Academy of natural sciences, memeber of the Russian Academy of cosmonautics by name of K.E.Ciolkovskij, member of the Russian Eecological Academy, Vice President of the International Center of the Roerichs. It was actually her, whom Svetoslav Roerich handed over the heritage of his family and who authorized her to create the Museum by name of N.K. Roerich, whose Director she was. Furthermore, she was Knight Of The Order Of Friendship.
Yuli Mikhailovich Vorontsov (1929-2007), Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador, special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for the CIS countries, President of the International Center of the Roerichs. Ambassador of the USSR (and later the Russian Federation) in India, France and the United States. A man of high morals and a brilliant professional, a true gentleman, radiating an inherent nobility, diplomat by the grace of God.
Boris Ilyich Bulochnik. Thanks to the help of Boris Ilyich Bulochnik the collection of paintings of the Museum by name of N.K. Roerich have been enlarged with new canvases. With his support, publishing activities of the ICR had been actively developed. The selfless activities of the President of “Master-Bank” B.I. Bulochnik, who dedicated much of his life and his capabilities to serve Culture, was awarded commemorative medals established by ICR.
The Roerichs’ heritage is the key to the most important creative achievements of mankind. Its significance for the fates of Russia and the whole world cannot be overemphasized. The Protection of the Heritage and its growth for the future of Russia is our direct responsibility and duty.
The Creation of the Museum with the status of a public cultural center was connected with Svetoslav Roerich’s views on culture. In particular, a considerable independence in the use of new approaches, the possibility of a broad cultural initiative and multifaceted cooperation with the international community over the departmental barriers helped to create in Russia a unique spiritual and cultural Center for the preservation, development and popularization of the philosophical and artistic heritage of the Roerichs. As foreseen by S.N. Roerich, public initiative to create a unique cultural center – a Museion of the twenty-first century, which is raising a new time and new cultural and historical tasks.
The content of the Museum is a priceless cultural heritage of the Roerichs, which Svetoslav Roerich transferred to the Soviet Roerichs Foundation (now the International Center of the Roerichs) in the year 1990.
A central place in the heritage of the Roerichs takes a new cosmic world outlook, Living Ethics, which reveals the close relationship between man and Cosmos, which contains knowledge that help you understand the features of the upcoming evolutionary phase in the development of mankind.
The Museum exhibition developed by the Director-General of the Museum by name of Nicholas Roerich, Lyudmila Shaposhnikova, reflects the key stages in the life and career of our great compatriots and acquaints visitors with their truly dedicated activities. Unique exhibits saturated with spiritual energies fill the ancient vaulted halls with a special aura.
Nicholas Roerich’s and Svetoslav Roerich’s canvases allow you to get in touch with the limitless and the majestic world of beauty. Various relics, gifts of the Roerichs ‘ Spiritual Teacher, manuscripts and art rarities, books and monographs from the Memorial Library of the Roerichs; personal belongings and items, having accompanied them on long journeys; photographic documents and a collection of antique bronzes from Indian Valley of Kullu – all this and more is included in the exposition of the Museum by name of N.K. Roerich. Thanks to sponsors the exposition of the Museum is constantly replenished with new exhibits, including priceless paintings of the Roerichs.
Highlight of the Museum’s art collection is the presence of an extensive collection of Himalayan sketches performed by the hand of N.K. Roerich. They are the basis for travelling exhibitions throughout Russia, as well as the near and far abroad. A distinctive feature of the Museum by name of N.K. Roerich is its multifaceted cultural and scientific activity, which is going far beyond traditional museum work. The Museum hosts the annual International Conference with the participation of eminent scientists and public figures on important issues of culture and science, it organizes exhibitions of contemporary artists and cosmists, classical music concerts, lectures with participation of leading representative of science specialists in the field of philosophy, history, culture and pedagogics, competitions in children’s drawing, festivals of ethnic culture, exhibitions of handicrafts and creative evenings. Additionally, the Museum actively collaborates with many cultural State and public organizations, including international ones.
Lopukhin Manor (XVII-XIX centuries), erected from ruins and lovingly restored, in the main House of which the Museum by name of N.K. Roerich is located, the recreated “Krasnoye” porch (XVII century) and the Memorial of the Roerich family’s sculptural complex turned the Museum into a true architectural-artistic ensemble of the Russian capital. All work was carried out thanks to the help of sponsors and many friends of the Museum, without any funding from the Government, which confirms the viability and effectiveness of a non-governmental form of a cultural organization.
From a small space of the Museum we fall into a vast world, a polygonal, beautiful and mysterious one – the world of the family of the Roerichs, whose lives and work have shown that the most wonderful legends can become true for us, if we follow the the path to moral and spiritual improvement, to expansion of consciousness and if we remember its foundations and if we accept into our consciousness the concept of Eternity and Infinity.