Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the St.-Petersburg Centre for Studies in History and Culture of Scandinavian Countries and Finland (Association for International Cooperation) formally invite you to participate in our 11th conference, “Scandinavian Readings – 2014” to be held St.-Petersburg (Russia) November, 2014.
Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) Russian Academy of Sciences continues series of projects on publication and provision of wide access for specialist and broader audience to the Museum’s holdings. A new on-line catalogue presents the entire collection of objects from the traditional culture of the Pacific Eskimos contained in the holdings of the Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
The Pacific Eskimos are the indigenous inhabitants of the eastern shore of the Alaska Peninsula, Kodiak Island and nearby islands, and the shore of Prince William SoundUntil 1867, Alaska and a small area in northern California were a part of Russia and known as Russian America, which was later sold to the USA. For over two centuries, the Kunstkamera (named the Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography since 1879) received new collections on the peoples of Russian America. The Museum currently stores over 450 items from the traditional culture of the Alutiit Pacific Eskimos. These items were gathered by participants of Russian round-the-world expeditions, employees of the Russian-American Company, and other researchers at a time when the Eskimos’ traditional culture had not yet experienced drastic changes under European influence.
The project was implemented in cooperation with the Alutiit Museum in the city of Kodiak (Alaska, USA), Koniag, Inc. (Alaska, USA), the Chugach Alaska Corporation (Alaska, USA), and with the support of the Consulate General of the USA in St. Petersburg. The result of this work was the 2010 publication of a complete academic catalog (in Russian) of collections related to Eskimo culture at the Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography: «Эскимосы Алютиик: каталог коллекций Кунсткамеры», СПб, «Наука». 2010 г.
In 2012, the University of Alaska Press (Fairbanks, Alaska, USA) prepared and published the English-language catalog “The Alutiit/Sugpiat: A Catalog of the Collections of the Kunstkamera” (Fairbanks, University of Alaska Press, 2012).
This online catalog has been completed with the support and cooperation of the Consulate General of the USA in St. Petersburg. The Museum expresses its special gratitude to the Consulate General of the USA in St. Petersburg for support of this project at all stages of its implementation.
In November 7—18, 2013 the Russian Cultural Center in Budapest (Hungary) presented the exhibition “In the Mirror of Time: Dialogue of Cultures in the Russian world” by Prof Efim Rezvan, MAE RAS Deputy Director.
On November, 4—5, 2013, the Day of National Unity in Russia, the official presentation of “Jonah”, integrated interactive media, scientific and artistic project by Prof Efim Rezvan, the Deputy Director of Kustkamera Museum took place in the Marble Hall of the Russian Museum of Ethnography (Saint-Petersburg). The project is grounded in the outcome of systematic research works of many years on the subject of peculiarities of registering the cultural code of various nations in the ancient myth and ritual systems.
Exhibition “Ainu Culture as Viewed from Russia ― From collections of Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) of Russian Academy of Sciences” opens in the exhibition halls of Otaru Museum (Otaru, Japan) on October 11, 2013. The first venue of the exhibition will last till November 25, 2013. From December 10, 2013 to February 16, 2013 visitors of Kyushu National Museum (Dazaifu, Japan) will also acquaint with the exhibition.
An expedition journey, which was made as part of the “Ijma‘=Concord” project (headed by Dr Prof Efim Rezvan), took place from April 28 to May 14, 2013. Its target was the island of Sumatra (Indonesia). The itinerary of the journey was as follows: Padang — Ulakan — Pariaman — Lake Maninjau — Koto Gadang — Annai Valley — Bukittinggi — Kota Baru — Pandai Sikek — Padang Panjang — Padang — Palembang — Kemaro Island.
The principal task of the expedition part of the “Ijma‘=Concord” project is the collection of materials that deal with the life of Muslim communities that employ various communicative strategies (interaction — isolationism) under conditions of active coexistence in polyethnic and multidenominational environment. The work in Sumatra continued the study of syncretism in Islam, which was first initiated during the expeditions to Southeastern regions of Ethiopia, Eastern Turkestan and Tibetan areas(2008), to India (Kerala, Tamil Nadu), Sri Lanka, the Maldives and Kazakhstan (2010, 2011). There are also other tasks of the expeditions, which by no means are less significant in scope – the collection of video and photographic material for publishing endeavors and exhibition projects, the acquisition of new ethnographic collections, the establishment of partnership relationships with colleagues from profile scientific centers.
The exhibition “In the Mirror of Time: Dialogue of Cultures in the Russian world” was working on board of the ship “Rimsky-Korsakov” as part of the expedition “Slavic course — 2012” (Khanty-Mansiysk — Salekhard — Omsk, 20.06.2012 — 05.07.2012, expedition head — Ekaterina Lonshakova) organized by the Society of Russian Culture (Surgut) due to the support of the Government of Khanty-Mansy Autonomous Area – Yugra and with the assistance of the Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) Russian Academy of Sciences. A traveling exhibition crossed from north to south almost the whole of Russia.
On May, 17th, 2012, a regular session of the seminar titled “Scientia Kunstkameras” took place in the Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) RAS. Dr. Willem Mulder, a specialist in the 17th-18th-century medicine from the Netherlands, read his paper titled “Frederik Ruysch – a phenomena”.
On March 9, 2012 the Russian Cultural Center in Ljubljana (Slovenia) held the opening of the exhibition titled "In the Mirrors of Time. Peoples of Russia through the Eyes of Photographers at the Turn of the 19th–20th Centuries (from the Collections of St. Petersburg Kunstkamera)" in the city of Maribor (Slovenia) during the festival "Maribor 2012. European Capital of Culture".
On October 8, 2011 the exhibition project «In the Mirrors of Times: Dialogue of Cultures in the “Russian World”» was presented within the frames of the XI Annual Session of the World Public Forum "Dialogue of Civilizations" (Rhodes, Greece).
On June 2 the exhibition “In the Mirrors of Time. Peoples of Russia through the Eyes of Photographers at the Turn of the 19th–20th Centuries (from the Collections of St. Petersburg Kunstkamera)” was opened in Bled (Slovenia) within the frames of the International Economic Conference “Russia and the European Union”, which was attended by scientists and economists from 20 countries.
On May 25, 2011 the Russian cultural center in Ljubljana (Slovenia) held the opening of the exhibition titled “In the Mirrors of Time. Peoples of Russia through the Eyes of Photographers at the Turn of the 19th–20th Centuries (from the Collections of St. Petersburg Kunstkamera)”.
On November 16, 2010 in Nairobi, within the framework of the visit of Mr Sergey Lavrov, the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation, to the Republic of Kenya, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the National Museums of Kenya. Prof. Efim Rezvan, Kunstkamera Deputy Director, and Dr. Idle Omar Farah, the Director General of the National Museums of Kenya, signed the documents in the presence of the heads of the foreign offices of both countries. The Memorandum makes provision for a broad scientific cooperation between the two institutions.
On July 19, 2010 Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) of the RAS held the opening of the exhibition titled "Between Turkestan and Tibet: the Salars". The Museum preserves one of the greatest ethnographic collections brought from Xinjiang and Qinghai (the PRC). It represents cultural and ethnical diversity of Chinese Turkestan and the history of its study in Russia. The gathering of this collection is closely linked to the activity of the legendary Russian Committee of Central Asian Studies and to the names of such prominent scholars and travellers as Nikolai M. Przhevalsky, Vsevolod I. Roborovsky, Sergey E. Malov, Edham R. Tenishev and many others.
In August of 2007 in Beijing within the framework of the Year of China in Russian Federation a treaty about scientific partnership between Saint-Petersburg Kunstkamera and the Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology of the Academy of Social Sciences of the PRC was concluded. One year later in line with this agreement a historical-ethnographic expedition of the MAE RAS "The Muslims of Chinese Turkestan (Uyghurs of Xinjiang, Salars of Qinghai)" took place on the territory of the Qinghai province and the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region of the PRC.
Macedonian Ethnographic Collection exhibition shows articles collected under Macedonian Historic and Ethnographic Expedition of the Petersburg Academy of Sciences, 1900. The expedition was headed by Nikodim Pavlovich Kondakov - distinguished historian of Byzantium and Old Russian art. The "first-hand" collector was Petr Alekseevich Lavrov - prominent Slavonic scholar, philologist, expert in old Slavic literature. The exhibition is also dedicated to the history of the development of the holdings of the Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera).
From March 3rd―18th, 2009 within the framework of the media and scholarly project “Ijma‘=Concord” a historical and ethnological expedition along the basic itinerary India/Kerala, Tamil-Nadu―Sri Lanka―Maldives was realized. The expedition route was developed in a way that allowed visiting a number of most important cultural and religious centers of the central part of the Great Silk Road. The latter was described in detail by the famous medieval traveler Ibn Battuta (1304—1369 or 1377). During twelve days of field work the expedition took six flights and covered about a thousand kilometers on ground and sea transportation.
New on-line exhibition "Montenegrin Ethnographic Collection as Historical Monument" presents rare for the Russian museums items related to traditional material culture of the Montenegrins of the first quarter of the 19th century as well as tells an intriguing history of their coming to Russia.
One of the earliest exhibits of the St.Petersburg Kunstkamera is on display. The mechanical toy – a scale model of a traditional Chinese pleasure craft, where musicians and a dancer entertain a noble traveler, - was produced at the beginning of the XVIIIth century in theBeijing clockmaker by the Chinese craftsmen supervised by European Jesuit missionaries. The mechanism survived the fire of 1747 in the first state Museum inRussia. Such scarce mechanical toys are almost unknown to the world museums.
Preliminary results of the historico-ethnological expedition “Muslims of Chinese Turkestan: Uyghurs of Xinjiang and Salars of Qinghai” by Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera), Russian Academy of Sciences
This exhibition marks the centenary of the famous Russian anthropologist, sculptor and archaeologist, founder of the method of facial reconstruction from the skull – Mikhail Gerasimov (1907 – 1970), who authored numerous documentary portraits, graphic and sculptural, of ancient people and of historical personalities.
Presentation of the illustrated edition "The Tlingit People: Catalogue of the Kunstkamera Collections" in the Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography (Kunstkamera) of the Russian Academy of Sciences