A Cultured Country

As part of this programme, the Bank supports Russia’s principal cultural institutions and their new projects (major exhibitions at Russia’s leading museums; theatre productions; federal theatre show tours), art associations, and channels promoting cultural values (TV and film producers). The programme gives priority to projects that help achieve Russia’s strategic objectives for 2024 envisaged by a national project called Culture.

In 2019, VTB took part in implementing 77 cultural projects.

VTB focused on working together with theatres, 2019 being the Year of Theatre in Russia. The Bank supported the State Academic Bolshoi Theatre, Boris Eifman Ballet Theatre, Yevgeny Vakhtangov Theatre, Oleg Tabakov Theatre, and Pyotr Fomenko Workshop Theatre. VTB-sponsored performances drew a total of over 66,000 theatregoers. In particular, the Bolshoi Theatre’s new production of Giselle had a total audience of 7,500. The premiere was prepared by Alexei Ratmansky, one of the most famous choreographers of our time. His team seeks to combine the grace and virtuosity of classical dance with the technology available to actors today. The Alexandrinsky Theatre staged The Pygmalion Effect, a new tragicomedy ballet from the artistic director and choreographer Boris Eifman. A total audience of more than 9,000 enjoyed his choreographic interpretation of the Greek mythological tale, taking a fresh look at the intricate relationship between art and life.

Tretyakov Gallery

Ilya Repin Exhibition

In 2019, the VTB Group took part in hosting a large Ilya Repin exhibition at the Tretyakov Gallery to mark the 175th birth anniversary of the Russian realist painter.

A large section of the exhibition was devoted to the painter’s late period, which has not yet been studied in depth. Apart from renowned paintings by Repin, the exhibition featured his less-known paintings such as Religious Procession in an Oak Forest: Appearance of the Icon, Self-Portrait at Work, Portrait of Nadya Repina, and Hopak: The Zaporozhye Cossacks Dancing (his last painting).

The exhibition also featured a body of studies on the painter. The accompanying entertainment and educational programmes included a host of activities such as lectures, presentations, and video tours.

From Moscow, the exhibition travelled to Saint Petersburg as part of a Russian Museum curatorial project.

In 2019, VTB Bank supported the 39th international music festival Sviatoslav Richter’s December Nights: Walks with Thomas Gainsborough. The festival is unique in that it builds on the idea of synthesising fine art, music, words, theatre, and dance. The 2019 programme featured English music played by the world’s leading musicians. The event took place at the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, which we support as the general sponsor.

In 2019, VTB Bank continued to work together with the MusicAeterna Orchestra led by Theodore Currentzis. The Bank took part in organising a series of concerts in Saint Petersburg (the St. Petersburg State Academic Capella) and Moscow (the Moscow Conservatory and Zaryadye Park). The concerts had a total audience of 7,000. Their original approaches to performing classical pieces are making an important contribution to the formation of modern musical culture.

2019 Group-sponsored exhibitions
Exhibition Exhibition Attendance, thousands
A Retrospective of Ilya Repin’s work A Retrospective of Ilya Repin’s work
Tretyakov Gallery
300+ paintings from 35 collections 601
Ilya Repin: The 175th Birth Anniversary Ilya Repin: The 175th Birth Anniversary
State Russian Museum
250+ paintings and drawings 300
Francis Bacon, Lucian Freud, and the School of London Francis Bacon, Lucian Freud, and the School of London
Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts
80 paintings and drawings 113
Avant-Garde: List Avant-Garde: List No. 1; The 100th Anniversary of the Museum of Pictorial Culture
New Tretyakov Gallery, Krymsky Val
250+ exhibits: paintings, drawings, sculptures, archive documents, and books 76
Guests from Naples: Artemisia Gentileschi and Her Contemporaries Guests from Naples: Artemisia Gentileschi and Her Contemporaries
Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts
Judith Slaying Holofer-nes by Artemisia Gen-tileschi; Angel with Dice and the Holy Tunic by Simon Vouet; Saint Agatha by Francesco Guarino; and their contemporaries 76
A Forgotten Russian Patron: The Collection of Count Pavel Sergeevich Stroganov A Forgotten Russian Patron: The Collection of Count Pavel Sergeevich Stroganov
State Hermitage Museum, the Winter Palace
140+ exhibits: paintings, sculptures, photos, watercolours, and books 64
Union of Youth: Russian Avant-Garde in 1909–1914 Union of Youth: Russian Avant-Garde in 1909–1914
Jewish Museum and Tolerance Centre
80 paintings by 35 artists 62
Leonardo and the Madonna Litta Leonardo and the Madonna Litta Poldi Pezzoli Museum, Milan Madonna Litta by Leonardo da Vinci 27

VTB Group companies also took part in organising cultural events. VTB Bank (Armenia) supported concerts dedicated to the 75th birth anniversary of the Armenian jazzman Levon Malkhasyan. VTB Bank (Georgia) supported the Vaja-Pshavela State Professional Drama Theatre and the Kote Marjanishvili State Academic Drama Theatre and sponsored a concert by the singer Stefane as well as cultural events held by Georgia’s Italian Embassy. VTB Bank (Belarus) signed on as the general partner for the projects Artist and the City (Minsk) and the Civic Art Gallery (Novopolotsk).

VTB Bank believes that creative young people should have an opportunity to develop artistically. For this purpose, the Bank supported the creation of Pushkinsky.Youth, a Pushkin Museum facility for adolescents. The museum now has its own space at the Lopukhin Estate, running all of its youth programmes in a single location. The building houses a research lab, reading room, exhibition area, media library, and lecture, coworking, and relaxation spaces. Programme participants can do research using media library sources, self-study after school, talk, and engage in other beneficial activities.

Given the crucial role that television plays in modern culture, VTB Bank is systematically developing this strategic discipline. In 2019, VTB continued to work together with the Russia-K and VGTRK television networks.

New Farm Children’s Museum Centre

New Farm Children’s Museum Centre

The New Farm Museum Centre is a collaborative project of VTB Bank and Peterhof, a state-financed museum. One of the centre’s goals is to revive Russian family traditions such as reading together, playing educational games, and staging home plays. New Farm’s play spaces and creative workshops make achieving that goal easier. All courses at the centre are taught interactively.

In a span of about five years, the centre has achieved some outstanding results:

  • The number of programme participants skyrocketed from 4,647 to 21,670;
  • The number of museums included in New Farm programmes increased from 10 to 24;
  • New Farm is regularly attended by students from 20 schools and children from 9 kindergartens;
  • Every year, New Farm takes part in the Children’s Days in Petersburg and Great Regatta festivals as well as in a variety of other local and national events;
  • Intermuseum 2019, a Russian museum festival, recognised New Farm with a diploma in the Best Educational Project category.