The Grotto at Kuskovo. 1910-1920s
Oil on cardboard
Pyotr Petrovichev called this not just an "intimate landscape", but “landscape architecture” too. From the 1910s onwards Petrovichev dedicated himself to painting such architectural monuments. He painted the famous Church of the Saviour on the Nereditsa near Novgorod the Great, as well as the interior and exterior of Church of the Assumption in the village of Volotov. After he had already painted the frescoes in the Church of the Saviour on the Seni, he returned again to the place of his youth, the city which had first introduced him to art—Rostov the Great. There he painted the Kremlin, the churches and the city squares, and then he went on to Vladimir, Kostroma, the Moscow Kremlin and the Trinity-St Sergius Lavra (a monastery). Then, finally, he came to the18th century Sheremetev estate at Kuskovo, which would become a special place for him. Even as a student of Levitan, he had painted several sketches and landscapes there, and when the manor was converted into a museum and became open to the public, he worked there often, creating views of the palace, the church, the outbuildings, and ponds - he painted details of the old buildings and quiet corners of the park, and several paintings are devoted to the interiors of the palace. Looking at "The Grotto in Kuskovo" makes the viewer want to take a walk there, sit for a while by the pond, admire the reflection of the old building and the lush greenery in the water, and enjoy the freshness of a bright summer’s day.