Historic Pavilion No. 8 signboard discovered at the VDNKh

July 13

Another discovery has been made at the VDNKh. Pavilion No. 8 Young Naturalists signboard was found in the course of restoration works. It decorated the main entrance to the pavilion since its commissioning in 1954 until 1959. This part of the façade’s decor was deemed completely lost for a long time. However, it turned out that it was simply covered by a new signboard during repairs that were performed over 60 years ago.

“Pursuant to the restoration plan of the building, the signboard was supposed to be recreated using archive photos. A panel had covered the spot where it was located. When it was dismounted, builders discovered the 1959 signboard Young Naturalists and Engineers. The very first signboard Young Naturalists of 1954 was beneath it. It was kept safe because the works over 60 years ago to repair and rename the pavilion were conducted hastily. The workers did not dismantle anything and simply covered part of the façade with panels, which would bear the new name. That signboard was also covered over again in the 1990s,” said Head of Moscow’s Department of Cultural Heritage Alexei Yemelyanov.

The Young Naturalists signboard was designed in a style rare for VDNKh pavilions. Its letters consisted of Roman type with large semi-ovals, which were sunk in a plaster background.

“This font is well recognizable and was widely used in the 1950s. The letters were later filled in with mortar, evidently when the pavilion’s name was changed. But the new signboard was not made. Now this unique feature of a monument hidden from view for over 60 years will be carefully cleaned and fixed,” noted the department head.

The later Young Naturalists and Engineers signboard of 1959 will be preserved. It is inside the pavilion so far and as soon as the restoration is finished it will be decided how to display it.

Pavilion No. 8 was built in 1952–1954 according to the design of architects Nikolai Grishin, Dmitry Vitukhin, Abram Goldin, Lyubov Ignatova, Gleb Makarevich and Anatoly Polyansky. It was the second pavilion for young naturalists (the first one was built in 1939 and dismantled during the post-war renovation). The most distinguished building feature is the glass cupola in its centre and two glazed round annexes by the sides. Its central façade is decorated with an arcade supported by high pillars.

The pavilion of the young naturalists’ movement displayed models of agricultural machinery made by school students and held various activities involving young naturalists.

VDNKh’s revival began in the spring of 2014. The exhibition regained its historic name and the grounds were landscaped. The exhibition complex has 49 cultural heritage sites, including historic pavilions and fountains, which cover an area of over 325 hectares. The restoration and repair of pavilions and fountains is ongoing. Plans are to develop the VDNKh as a major hub for cultural, education and recreation.  Last year it turned 80 years old. In 2019 it had 33 million visitors.

Source: mos.ru

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