Pavlovsk Palace a book by Anatoli Michailovich Kuchumov website design by Bob Atchison
  Pilaster Room
The Pilaster Room, created in 1800 by Giacomo Quarenghi, was meant to serve as a reception room in the suite of private apartments. Of all of Quarenghi's interiors it is the most impressive. In shape, it is slightly curved, following the contour of the gallery which it adjoins. The walls are rhythmically articulated by pilasters of the Corinthian order, whose golden-yellow stucco facing, closely imitating Siena marble, enriches the general colour scheme. Here Quarenghi allowed himself a departure from his usually severe style, setting into the walls relief panels, coloured in imitation of dark-green antique bronze. The combination of yellow and white stucco with the dark "bronze" decoration gives a monumental quality to this relatively small interior, without destroying, however, its intimate mood. The painting on the ceiling, done from the designs of Giovanni Scotti, also includes motifs reproducing ornaments in patinated bronze, such as antique helmets, acanthus scrolls, or figures of sphinxes, and is subordinated to the colour scheme of the apartment.

The Pilaster Room is one of Quarenghi's best. interiors illustrating the Russian classical style. Its function as a place for the less formal receptions and evening family gatherings determined the choice of furniture, which includes console tables, bureaux, a screen, work-tables, etc.

Most of the pieces were made from the drawings by Andrey Voronikhin at the workshops of Heinrich Gambs. Austere in shape and elegant in decoration, with bronze ornaments and inlays on ebony, his work is distinguished by rare perfection of veneering, and a fine sense of the natural beauty of the wood, which is brought out by excellent polish.

Voronikhin also designed many other objects decorating the Pilaster Room, as, for example, the crystal Atheniennes,- tazzas on tripod stands,- the obelisks of coloured stone, and the vases of Urals jasper, fashioned at Ekaterinburg.




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