• Sculptural composition: Leg of an Atlas

    Rustam Igamberdiev, Mikhail Savinykh, Igor Bershteyn

Sculptural composition: Leg of an Atlas


The model is an epigram to the entire display of the Russian pavilion in Venice. St Petersburg restoration specialists took a mould from the knees down of one of the Atlantes that adorn the portico of the New Hermitage and made casts of the lower legs that are set up in semidarkness. The light does, however, catch the cross-shaped framework within them, making it clear that this is not the whole statue. For many decades the huge granite Atlantes created by Alexander Terebenev have been a symbol of the Hermitage. In 2018, as the famous statues approached their 170th birthday, Alexander Gorodnitsky’s song The Atlantes Hold up the Sky was made the official anthem of the Hermitage. One of the three aspects of itself that the Hermitage is showing in the pavilion in Venice, is the face of the temple, perhaps a pagan one, according to Mikhail Piotrovsky, since the Atlantes have long since become a symbol for veneration and an independent super-object in the museum collection.


Sculptural composition: Leg of an Atlas



© The State Hermitage Museum

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