The State Tretyakov Gallery

The State Tretyakov Gallery

The State Tretyakov Gallery is one of the most famous museums in Russia.

The museum is extensive. With one of the best collections in the world, it is no surprise that it averages 1200000 visitors each year. The State Tretyakov Gallery is a must-visit for any art lovers.

The State Tretyakov Gallery


The gallery gets its name from its founder, Pavel Tretyakov.

The Tretyakov family bought a house on Lavrushinsky Pereulok in 1851. Five years later, Tretyakov bought his first two paintings by Russian artists and formed the basis of his collection. Many consider 1856 to be the gallery’s founding year because of this.

The opening of the Moscow City Gallery of Pavel and Sergei Tretyakov took place in 1867. The gallery displayed a collection of 1,276 paintings and 471 sculptures by Russian artists.

Hall of the gallery

Over the years, as the collection grew, so did the building. To accommodate the growing gallery collection, the Tretyakov family attached outbuildings.

In August 1892, Tretyakov presented his art gallery to the city of Moscow as a gift. It was only after the death of Pavel in 1898 that the building became an official museum.

The museum has steadily expanded and changed since its initial conception. In 1926, architect A. V. Shchus became gallery director. During his time in this position, he renovated old buildings and constructed new ones. Shchus’ renovation plans involved establishing the Church of St Nicholas in Tolmachi as a private church museum.

Church collection 

During World War II the gallery prepared for evacuation. In 1941 the paintings and artwork traveled on a train of 17 wagons to Novosibirsk. It was not until May 1945 that the museum reopened.


The State Tretyakov Gallery is one of the largest museums in Russia. The gallery consists of different museum spaces under the brand State Tretyakov Gallery. The State Tretyakov Gallery brand houses over 180,000 works altogether.

Paintings of the Tretyakov Gallery

The most popular exhibition is The State Tretyakov Gallery, located in Lavrushinsky Lane. Just 15-20 minutes’ walk from Red Square and near the Tretyakovskaya station.

The gallery’s collection consists entirely of Russian art of the 11th – early 20th century.
Visitors can see some of Russia’s most famous works of art.

The exhibitions demonstrate a range of Russian art. Visitors can see 12th-century icons to the political works of realist painter Ilya Repin.

Just a kilometer away stands the New Tretyakov Gallery. Here you can see some contemporary Russian art of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries.

A tour around the museum can last up to 2 hours. Ultimately, the timing is dependent upon personal preference. Visitors can find information in multiple languages in the museums.

The museum is open for most of the week, aside from Mondays. The timings do vary across the days so make sure to double-check before scheduling your visit.

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