The Palace-and-Park Ensemble Pavlovsk
20, Revolyutsii Street, Pavlovsk
On the territory of Pavlovsk there is a palace and park ensemble - the greatest monument of Russian architecture of late 18 - early 19th century, included by the Decree of the President of Russia in the list of historical monuments protected by the State. The State National Museum is visited by more than 1,5 million tourists every year. Pavlovsk is included in the list of the cities protected by UNESCO.
On 12th December 1777 on the birthday of the first son (the future Emperor Alexander I) the Heir of Throne Pavel Petrovich and the Great Duchess Maria Fjodorovna got as a present from Empress Ekaterina II 362 desyatinas of the land on the rivers of Slavjanka River together with the villages Lynna, located in the region of present Five Corners, and Kuznetsy, located on the territory of the House of Children's Creativity, for arranging the Summer residence. According to the archives "The Estimate on Account", that day the building of "The House of his Highness" was started. This date is the birthday of Pavlovsk. In 1778, since spring, the works on arranging the residence for the Heir's family started. Bought from villages peasants and soldiers of the garrison regiments on the high banks of Slavjanka built two wooden two storey houses: "The house of Her Nighness" called "Paul'lyst" (on the site of left wing of the present palace) and "the House of His Majesty" called (on the site of the Slavjanka and Tyzva rivers confluence). They called their new estate "selo Pavlovskoye".
In May 1781 the architect D.Quarneghi started to build "the Saint Maria Magdalene Church" with attached one-storey wings for alm-house and hospital on the left bank of Slavyanka river near the Kuznetsy village. The building was completed in two years. Near the hospital (on the corner of present Revolution and Marata streets) the first in the village school was opened in April 1784. The road to Tsarskoe selo became the first street; on the right bank there was its prolongation "Fjodorovsky posad".
The obelisk with the inscription "Pavlovskoe"was started to build in 1777" was opened on the right bank of Slavjanka on 24 October 1782 in the honour of Pavlovsk foundation. It was designed by Ch.Kameron.
The Emperor Paul I gave a Decree about the renaming the village into the town on 12 November 1796, in a week after coming to Throne. At the same time the villages Tjarlevo, Zipitsy, Fjodorovsy Posad, Krasnoye Selo with peasants and lands were joined to Pavlovsk.
In palace and park complex was created basically during two last decades of 18th - the first quarter of 19th centuries; the greatest architects, sculptors and painters took part in its creation. The common compositional project, belonged to Ch.Cameron, was developed by working after him in Pavlovsk V.Brennaya, D.Quarneghi, A.Voronikhin, T. de Tomon, K.Rossi, P.Gonsago and others. The greatest sculptors I. Prokofjev, F.Gordeev, I.Martos, I.Kozlovsky, V.Demut-Malinovsky decorated the palace and the park by their works.
There was a fire in the palace on10 January 1803 lasting for three days. The architect A.N.Voronikhin, who was the main architect of Pavlovsk, held the restoration of the palace. He stayed on this position until his death (hi died in February 1814).
In 1815 K.I.Rossi was appointed the court architect. In 19 years under his direction the forming of the palace and park ensemble was completed. He designed the Nikolsiye cast-iron gates (now on Revolution street) in 1826. Their details were casted at Saint-Petersburg casting plant for six weeks; they were assembled for twelve days on the site.
In January 1835 the Austria engineer F.Gerstner presented to Nikolai I a note "On benefits of building the railroad from Saint-Petersburg to Tsarskoe Selo and Pavlovsk". The concession on building the Tsarskoselskaya railroad for public use was given on 21 March 1836. In August the lying of rails was started, and in a month there was the first public horse-drawn trip from Tsarskoe Selo to Pavlovsk. The celebration opening of the first in Russia railroad from Saint-Petersburg to Pavlovsk of 30 versts length was held on 30 September 1837. It was completed on the park territory near the Cast-iron gates by the erection of a big wooden building called "The Station", which served not only for arriving and departing of trains but also for having a nice rest.
The self-sacrificing, long and laborious work of the restores gradually gave back the lost beauty to the ensemble. Thousands of Leningrad citizens and guests from Russia and all over the world come to Pavlovsk in summer and in winter, in spring and in autumn. Revived by the restores the ensemble of Pavlovsk presents its beauty to people.
Working in the palace Kameron, Brenna and Gonzago simultaneously worked out the planning and decorating the park. Greatly using the relief of the site, artistically including different decorative constructions and grouping the trees the architects created the grand and beautiful park. This park is a unique encyclopedia of garden and park art, where the strictness of a regular planning is harmonically combined with the freedom of a landscape.
In park planning all basic art trends, existing in Europe of late 18th - early 19th centuries, were reflected: the French architectural, or regular, style of Volier section, the Italian - of Big circles, Brenna's staircase and Amphitheatre, the Dutch - of Own garden and the English landscape - of the Slavjanka river valley and other regions. The variety of compositional ways in designing different in size and character sections gives the park of Pavlovsk its unrepeated originality.
The numerous architectural constructions decorated the park - pavilions, bridges, stairs - together with the sculptures serves the compositional centres of separate regions.
In 1795 on the site of the summer house "Mariental" B.Brenna (the main architect of the Maly palace since 1786) started the building of the Mariental Fortress. The decorating works were completed in 17898. According to the Emperor's Decree the fortress was included into the staff of fortresses and was under control of War Department until 1811. On its first floor there was a garrison, the second was arranged for the important guests staying.
The architect Ch.Kameron started his work on the project of a future palace and the first stone was laid on 25 May 1782. In 1783 the main building works in the palace were finished. Then the palace was covered by a roof and the works on inner decorating were started.The smart golden and white Pavlovsky palace on a high bank of the Slavjanka river is seen from many park sites and is an architectural dominant of the ensemble. The complex plan and various decorations of facades including a lot of foreshortenings make the palace very picturesque. Artificial marble or color plastering, covered by painting and modeled ornament decorates the different in planning halls - round, oval, octahedron, rectangular -. The clearness of dividing the plain walls is required by tender scale of pink, green, white,violet shades of the decoration and furniture. The play of color is stressed by the play of light. In the Italian hall the light comes through the glass of the dome, and in the Greek Hall it comes through the big windows and from the neighbor halls - of the War and of the Peace. The picture gallery and the Cavalier Hall are lighted from two sides. The light pays a special role in the creating the unique appearance of the "Torch" study.
In the Palace halls there are wonderful collections of furniture, decorative fabric, wares of color stone, bronze, chine, crystal and ivory. It seems that there is no such kind of the applied art that would not be presented here by masterpieces of Russian and foreign labels. Thanks to the skills of the architects that were at the same time the artists and the designers the greatness of the works of the Decorative and Applied Art is perceived as a united ensemble.
Combined Entrance Ticket. Palace and park