The State Memorial and Natural Preserve "Museum-estate of Leo Tolstoy "Yasnaya Polyana"
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Государственный мемориальный и природный заповедник «Музей-усадьба Л.Н. Толстого «Ясная Поляна»
One of the latest and most significant acquisitions for the museum's Non-memorial collection is the collection of drawings by Evgeny Kumankov – one of the best-known Soviet and Russian theater and cinema designers, member of the USSR Artists Union (from 1945). In the 1970s, Kumankov was the chief designer of the Maly Theater. His works can be found at the Tretyakov Gallery, the Museum of the History of Moscow, the State Theater Museum named after A. Bakhrushin, at the State A. Pushkin Museum and at other museums.
In 1961-62, Kumankov worked as the chief designer on the film War and Peace directed by Sergey Bondarchuk. While working on his sketches, the artist visited Yasnaya Polyana, whose atmosphere had contributed so much to the creation of the world where the Bolkonskys, the Rostovs and the Bezukhovs were born and died.
All the works done for the film by Kumankov in 1961-62 were presented at the Ministry of Culture, and were highly praised. But two months later, the artist decided to quit the project, for personal artistic reasons. His work was never finished and was not realized in the final version of the film. But later Kumankov returned to it many times. As a result, he created a series of drawings, not for the film any more, but for his own creative satisfaction. So, some works in the series are dated in the 1970s and even 2006. 72 of the 153 sketches acquired by the museum are dated by the author. 47 of them are dated 1961-62, and 25 are dated 1975 – 2006. The sketches vary in size.
The fact that we have the entire collection adds to its value. It gives us an opportunity to follow the artist's creative aspirations. The detailed way the interiors are done, the general views and close-ups, and the storyboarding of some episodes remind one that initially they were intended to be used for a film.

The House of the Rostov Family. Sketch for the film War and Peace by S. Bondarchuk. 1961.
Grey paper, cardboard, mixed technique. 53.7x93.8; 80.6x101.8

Acquired in 2008 from the author (Moscow)

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