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The Grand Catherine Palace

13 May

About 30 minutes, by bus, south of Saint Petersburg lies Pushkin. This city is named after the Russian poet Alexander Pushkin. Before 1937 the city was named Tsarskoye Selo which literary means “The Tsar’s Village”. Here you can visit another architectural masterpiece of Bartolomeo Rastrelli, the Grand Catherine Palace. The palace was originally commissioned by Peter the Great and named after his second wife Catherine. This palace was far more modest than the one standing there now. When Peter’s and Catherine’s daughter Elizabeth become Tsaritsa, she commissioned a new palace to replace to old one, a palace on the scale to rival Versailles. Of course, she hired her favourite architect, Bartolomeo Rastrelli, for this job. The new palace was presented to the Tsaritsa in 1756. It’s 325 meter long and nearly 1 km in circumference, with elaborately decorated blue and white facades featuring gilded atlantes, caryatids and pilasters.

If you’re in Saint Petersburg and have a day over I really recomend a daytrip to Pushkin and the Grand Catherine Palace. You can reach Puskin by train from Vitebsk vokzal (station) or by marshrutka (minibus) from Moskovskaya ploshchad (square).

A couple of HDR-pictures I captured of the Grand Catherine Palace.

This is the Grand Catherine Palace (Большой Екатерининский Дворец)  viewed from the Catherine Park towards the church wing. The palace is located in Tsarskoye Selo (Pushkin), 25 km south of the centre of Saint Petersburg, Russia.The palace is named after Catherine I, the wife of Peter the Great, who ruled Russia for two years after her husband's death. Originally a modest two storey building commissioned by Peter for Catherine in 1717, the palace owes its awesome grandeur to their daughter, Empress Elizabeth, who chose Tsarskoe Selo as her chief summer residence. Starting in 1743, the building was reconstructed by four different architects, before Bartholomeo Rastrelli, Chief Architect of the Imperial Court, was instructed to completely redesign the building on a scale to rival Versailles.The brand new palace was presented to the Empress in 1756. It is 325 meter long and nearly 1 km in circumference, with elaborately decorated blue and white facades featuring gilded atlantes, caryatids and pilasters designed by German sculptor Johann Franz Dunker, who also worked with Rastrelli on the palace's original interiors. In Elizabeth's reign it took over 100kg of gold to decorate the palace exteriors, an excess that was deplored by Catherine the Great when she discovered the state and private funds that had been lavished on the building.

A closer view of Catherine Palace (Большой Екатерининский Дворец) in Tsarskoye Selo (Pushkin), 25 km south of the centre of Saint Petersburg, Russia.The palace is named after Catherine I, the wife of Peter the Great, who ruled Russia for two years after her husband's death. Originally a modest two storey building commissioned by Peter for Catherine in 1717, the palace owes its awesome grandeur to their daughter, Empress Elizabeth, who chose Tsarskoe Selo as her chief summer residence. Starting in 1743, the building was reconstructed by four different architects, before Bartholomeo Rastrelli, Chief Architect of the Imperial Court, was instructed to completely redesign the building on a scale to rival Versailles.The brand new palace was presented to the Empress in 1756. It is 325 meter long and nearly 1 km in circumference, with elaborately decorated blue and white facades featuring gilded atlantes, caryatids and pilasters designed by German sculptor Johann Franz Dunker, who also worked with Rastrelli on the palace's original interiors. In Elizabeth's reign it took over 100kg of gold to decorate the palace exteriors, an excess that was deplored by Catherine the Great when she discovered the state and private funds that had been lavished on the building.

A closer view of Catherine Palace (Большой Екатерининский Дворец) in Tsarskoye Selo (Pushkin), 25 km south of the centre of Saint Petersburg, Russia.The palace is named after Catherine I, the wife of Peter the Great, who ruled Russia for two years after her husband's death. Originally a modest two storey building commissioned by Peter for Catherine in 1717, the palace owes its awesome grandeur to their daughter, Empress Elizabeth, who chose Tsarskoe Selo as her chief summer residence. Starting in 1743, the building was reconstructed by four different architects, before Bartholomeo Rastrelli, Chief Architect of the Imperial Court, was instructed to completely redesign the building on a scale to rival Versailles.The brand new palace was presented to the Empress in 1756. It is 325 meter long and nearly 1 km in circumference, with elaborately decorated blue and white facades featuring gilded atlantes, caryatids and pilasters designed by German sculptor Johann Franz Dunker, who also worked with Rastrelli on the palace's original interiors. In Elizabeth's reign it took over 100kg of gold to decorate the palace exteriors, an excess that was deplored by Catherine the Great when she discovered the state and private funds that had been lavished on the building.

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Posted by on May 13, 2011 in History, Photo, Pushkin, Saint Petersburg

 

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