VDNKh fountain guide: Stone Flower and Fisherman

July 8
Parks and pedestrian areas

Russia’s main exhibition centre has got together a fountain guide which gives details of some of the most important ones at VDNKh. Many of these are considered emblems of Moscow, including the Friendship of Peoples, the Stone Flower and the Golden Spike, as well as smaller and less significant ones. The fountain walk is estimated to be about four kilometres and will take approximately 45 minutes but some people take all day.

14 Central Alley fountains. These are thought to be the first point of interest. They are situated in two rows right behind the arch of the main entrance. Each fountain has a red polished granite octagonal bowl. The ensemble was erected in 1954 and was designed by the architect Georgy Shchyuko. In 2018 the fountains resumed flowing again after being repaired.

Photo: mos.ru. Maxim Denisov

Next comes the Friendship of Peoples fountain. It was also constructed in 1954 and the architects Konstantin Topuridze and Grigory Konstantinovsky and engineer Vladimir Klyavin were put in charge of the project. The fountain on a square of the same name consists of an oval bowl and standing high up is a golden sheaf of wheat, surrounded by statues of girls in folk costumes. They represent republics of the Soviet Union, which were 16 when the fountain was built.. This has become a popular  place for meeting and making dates. The fountain did not undergo serious maintenance work for 65 years but after major repairs it started functioning once again in 2019.

Photo: VDNKh

Next stop is the fountains at Pavilion No. 14 Azerbaijan consisting of two bowls on the steps and then it’s on to the Stone Flower fountain that made its début in 1954. Its designer Konstantin Topuridze was inspired by a collection of fairy tales devoted to the Urals by Pavel Bazhov. This particular fountain consists of a thousand jets of water with flower petals made of among other materials cobalt glass in the middle. Granite pedestals support 16 bronze constructions representing the bounties of nature from the republics of the Soviet Union. There are smaller fountains inside the big one depicting cast iron sturgeons and bronze geese. Like the Friendship of Peoples, the Stone Flower fountain was done up last year.

Photo: VDNKh

The next stop is a not so famous fountain-water pool with the Boy Hauling in a Fish statue, which is also called Boy with a Fish or Fisherman. The small fountain is situated behind Pavilion No. 64 Optics. The composition was created by Boris Son in 1954 and  it is an exact copy of the work of the same name made in 1949 and erected in Pobedy (Victory) Park in St Petersburg.

Photo: VDNKh

Promyshlennosti (Industry) Square comes next and the Rocket fountain made up of five floating ones at the base of a model of a Vostok. At night the cascade of water is illuminated by nine underwater coloured spotlights and there are four-metre jets of different shaded water.

Photo: VDNKh

VDNKh also boasts dry fountains so named as they have no bowl and it seems that the water is gushing right out of the ground. They are designed in such a way to let people get up close to the fountain and walk between the jets which vary in sequence and rhythm and are illuminated at night.

Another dry fountain, constructed in 2018 by Michael Pena, is to be found on the square in front of the Moskvarium Oceanography and Marine Biology Centre. It’s surrounded by an amphitheatre which can accommodate 90 people. It’s considered a good place to sit down and watch the dancing jets of water and Landscape Park, which is not so far away. There’s also a dry fountain (by Pena) located beside Pavilion No. 31 Geology. The fountain was built in 2019

Photo: VDNKh

The last point on the route is the Golden Spike. This is regarded as one of the most spectacular fountains in VDNKh. It was constructed in 1954 as a symbol of the Soviet people’s success in agriculture and designed by Konstantin Topuridze and Grigory Konstantinovsky. It has 66 water jets, 30 of which spurt to a height of 25 metres. Due to its neglected state during the 1990s it was not functioning. The Golden Spike took from 2016 t0 2018 to repair. It’s covered with golden  and coloured glass smalt. The area surrounding Kamensky Pond, where the Golden Spike stands, was tidied up and it’s considered a good place to sit as there are deck chairs there.

Photo: VDNKh

VDNKh is a unique public space with a tremendous history dating back 80 years. The exhibition complex has 49 cultural heritage sites, including historic pavilions and fountains. It covers an area of over 325 hectares and in 2019 33 million visitors went there.

The fountain season began in Moscow quite recently. About 600 fountains and other decorative water installations will be functioning on city squares and in streets and parks until 1 October.

Source: mos.ru

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