Costume design for Armide, Le Pavillon d'Armide (1907). Alexandre Benois. Silver paint, brush, ink, lead pencil, white paint, watercolour on paper. Tretyakov Gallery.

Le Pavillon d'Armide is a ballet in one act and three scenes choreographed by Michel Fokine with music by Nikolai Tcherepnin on a libretto by Alexandre Benois. The work was first presented on 25 November 1907 at the Mariinsky Theatre in Saint Petersburg, with Anna Pavlova in the role of Armida.

Anna Mons House in the German Quarter, by Alexandre Benois (1911)

Anna Mons  was a Dutch commoner, mistress of Peter the Great

German Quarter also known as the Kukuy Quarter, was a neighborhood in the northeast of Moscow, located on the right bank of the Yauza River east of Kukuy Creek (hence the name Kukuy Quarter), within the present-day Basmanny District of Moscow.

The German Quarter appeared in the mid-16th century and was populated by foreigners from Western Europe (collectively called “Germans” by the Russian people [ the word ‘German’ in Russian means 'mute’]) and prisoners, taken during the Livonian War of 1558-1583. The residents of the German Quarter were mainly engaged in handicrafts and flour-grinding business


   The Tales Of Grandeur According To Mr Somov (Konstantin Somov)

“ Konstantin Somov (1869-1939) was a Russian Symbolist painter and illustrator associated with the World of Art movement (“Mir iskusstva” in Russian). Born to a father who was an art historian/curator and a  mother who was a superior musician, Somov became interested in 18th-century art and music at an early age. Growing up in a highly cultured family, he played piano, took singing lessons and started to paint. Significantly, he also became interested in men. In high school he had a passionate love affair with Dmitry Filosofov, who years later became Sergei Diaghilev’s lover. Somov (self portrait at left) studied at the Imperial Academy of Arts from 1888 to 1897. While at the Academy, he befriended Alexandre Benois, who later introduced him to Diaghilev and Leon Bakst. The World of Art movement, founded by a group of these students, promoted artistic individualism and other principles of Art Nouveau. Their magazine, with Diagilev as Editor-in-Chief, was highly influential in the world of art in the first decade of the twentieth century. Somov generously contributed to this publication”

Selected Works:

1. Fireworks In The Park

2. Evening Rendezvous

3. Pierrot

4. A Galant Scene 

5. Autumn Landscape with Two Peasant Girls and a Rainbow

6. A Lady’s dressing table

7. Illustration from the Book of the Marquise

8. Konstantin Somov