Rucriminal.info and the telegram channel of the Cheka-OGPU continue to publish an investigation about the fact that the owner of the PIK company, Sergey Gordeev, seizes Russian museums one by one and promotes his assistant Elizaveta Likhacheva, who, under the patronage of Gordeev, recently received the position of director of the State Museum of Fine Arts named after Pushkin. In the first part of the investigation, we stopped how Gordeev organized the dismissal of the director of the Museum of Architecture. Shchusev Irina Korobina and the appointment of Likhacheva in her place.
By order of Minister Medinsky, Likhachev was appointed director of the Museum, but not immediately. During the unrest associated with the departure of Korobina, I.V. was appointed Acting Director for several months. Chepkunov, her deputy for scientific work, and announced a "competition for the concept of the development of the museum." And here is the most interesting thing - what concept did Likhachev develop and submit to the competition, which won a complete and irrevocable victory? We quote an open letter from the President of the SAR N.I. Shumakov:
“I read the “concept” of the new director of the Museum of Architecture. Shchusev and was surprised - the program outlined in it was repeatedly presented to the architectural community by Irina Korobina, who accepted the museum in 2010 in complete collapse. First of all, she gathered us together and presented a program for the rescue and development of the museum, which was approved by the Union of Architects of Russia. The most interesting thing is that it has already been implemented to a large extent. The Virtual Museum of Architecture, which Likhachev is going to create, has long been created both in the form of a website and in the form of a free mobile application that is available on my iPhone. The revival of scientific activity, declared in Likhacheva's "concept", occurred in 2010, moreover, Korobina involved our professional workshop in it, creating the Academic Council, which included many fellow architects. I know that under the leadership of Irina, the "Concept for the Protection of Monuments of the Soviet Avant-Garde" was developed, which for the first time embraced the architectural heritage of the 1920s and 1940s on a national scale, etc. and so on. What about the huge number of books and catalogs published in 7 years? For the first time, the Museum began to prepare publications for almost all of its significant projects, and how many of them turned out to be, and what a design and printing quality!
The permanent exhibition, declared by the first point of Likhacheva's "concept", is partly already working, partly exists at the design project stage. We made a collective decision to open it with hotel parts in stages, so as not to close the museum for a single day. Stage 1 was completed a long time ago - the model of the Grand Kremlin Palace marked the beginning of the revival of the permanent exhibition. Stage 2 - "The Corridor of Time", an interactive history of Russian architecture, was carried out a year ago, the "Corridor" is open and successfully receives visitors. Last year, Irina presented the design project of the three final stages to us simultaneously with the joyful news that she managed to attract sponsorship funds for its implementation. Now the statements of the “new director” are widely quoted, in particular, “if you understand everyone, the understanding will break down.” So my “understanding” has already broken down - I don’t understand how it is possible to declare in the Museum’s new development program exactly the one according to which it has already been developing for seven years, and very successfully, which can be seen with the naked eye.
We learned from the museum staff that Likhacheva's concept, unanimously chosen as the best, was illustrated with photographs from 2010, that is, the time when the Museum hosted Korobin.
We quote Shumakov:
“We know that Korobina received the Museum in an emergency state in all areas: without title documents, with numerous violations in the legal, economic and storage spheres. For seven years of work under her leadership, the museum staff made a breakthrough in all areas of activity and brought the Museum out of the collapse ... "
And where are these employees, united by irregular work, to bring the museum out of collapse? Likhacheva declares everywhere that she "did not fire a single person." And where do they go? From the backbone of the team that pulled the museum out of the disaster, there were only 3 people left, and there were more than 30. Many left immediately after the dismissal of Korobina, the rest, who signed the petition against the appointment of Likhacheva, the “director”, tirelessly repeating after each alcoholic libation “I remember every signature, I have not forgotten no one”, squeezed out for 6 years in various ways - from demotion to threats of physical violence. The most zealous Likhachev personally promised to "bury in the museum yard." There was also a funeral - a young employee for the maintenance of museum equipment, Vanya Podshibyakin, handsome and smiling, who, as it turned out, during the operation to clean up the previous director, on behalf of Likhacheva, put bugs for listening in I.M. Korobina, fell out of the window of a high-rise building. The official version of the investigation is suicide.
And what did “Director Likhacheva” do, how can she report to people and ruthe leadership that entrusted her with a high post? Only with loud statements that "attendance to the museum has increased dramatically." Will it be a problem for Likhacheva, who barely escaped prosecution for fraud in the FMS and concocted a “concept of museum development” using the thimble-handling method, the falsification of attendance figures? The few museum employees who worked under the former director see no difference in the number of visitors. But the composition has changed - there are many times fewer architects, they no longer feel the museum is “their own” and talk about a decrease in the quality of exhibition projects, among which frankly commercial ones have begun to appear that have nothing to do with architecture or art, such as Andrey Elsipov’s exhibition which caused an explosion of general indignation.
More facts. Likhacheva canceled the permanent exposition “Great Projects of Russia”, which was developed at the level of working drawings and agreed equipment supplies, besides, it was partially put into operation (with the expositions “The Grand Kremlin Palace” and “The Corridor of Time”), dismantled the permanent exposition of the model of the “Great Kremlin Palace”, hung the Kalyazinsky frescoes on the walls, restored for inclusion in the “Great Projects of Russia”, replacing them with a large-scale project dedicated to the achievements of Russian architectural thought, stopped work on adapting the wing of the Gardener’s House to the needs of the Melnikov House branch, canceled the implementation of the permanent exhibition “ Melnikov's Life Line", closed work on the development of the Corridor of Time virtual museum, on the permanent exhibition "Memory of Monuments", which reveals the phenomenon of fixing historical memory in Russian culture, on the Credo project, which promotes the work of young Russian architects, on the project "Museum Cluster near the Kremlin Walls”, which develops the interaction of museums in the center of Moscow, canceled the development of the “Concept for the Protection and Preservation of Avant-Garde Monuments”, blocked the Magnier vaults in the Ruin wing with a floor, conceptually left for the review of visitors ... And many, many other closed or dried up projects, as a result decisions and actions of an incompetent person who got to a high position with the task of “cleaning up” the estate near the walls of the Kremlin… This is a story of destruction…
And what is in the standings? What did Likhacheva realize “on her own behalf” during the 6 years of her tenure? The biggest innovation is an inadequate rebranding, the replacement of the logo depicting the museum building on Vozdvizhenka as a collective image of Russian architecture, which corresponds to the purpose of the museum, with the letter Щ, obviously meaning the surname Shchusev. Needless to say, this decision crosses out the pre-Schusev history of the Museum of Architecture, originally opened in 1934 in the Donskoy Monastery as a division of the USSR Academy of Architecture, to which A.V. Shchusev had no relation, but also the history of pre-Schusev Russian architecture and ancient Russian architecture. Can a person who knows and respects the history of the museum he leads make such a decision? The same question arises about the competition for the construction of the museum courtyard with pavilions, held on the initiative of Likhacheva. The very idea of building up this iconic space destroys its aesthetic code and the value of an open-air museum exposition. Such a decision could be made by the manager of the house, Shvonder, but not by the director of the federal museum, who cares about the values of culture. And what about Likhacheva's plans to close off the double-height space of the Ruin wing, which she successfully leases out for outside events? The director invites specialists, before whom he sets the task of restoring the floor of the 3rd floor of the wing, which, of course, will expand the area and, therefore, in the opinion of the layman, will increase income. Obviously, the incompetent director is unaware that the Ruin is a success, including commercial success, precisely because all decisions were made in order to reveal the historical truth and beauty of space with all the marks of time, and not calculations of square and cubic meters.
Let's go back to the Open Letter:
“... However, there is still one innovation in Likhacheva’s “concept” - the creation of a museum depository in the area of the Third Transport Ring. Employees of the Museum of Architecture told me that their "new director", when she was introduced in this capacity by Deputy Minister V.V. Aristarkhov, said: "We will take out all the junk from the Museum." In my understanding, this is a clearly formulated program for the liberation of the Manor from museum collections. Here my “understand” understands, but the “agreement” breaks down - she categorically disagrees.
2017 Likhachev, appointed director of the State Museum of Architecture. A.V. Shchuseva (hereinafter referred to as the Museum), presents her concept of its development: "... we take out the junk (collection) beyond the Third Transport Ring", where she proposes to build a Museum depository.
2019 interview for the Artnewspaper newspaper (No. 71, 03/22/19) - Likhacheva declares her unwillingness to build a depository on Vozdvizhenka, “even if they allocate a plot” next to the museum complex: “because the Metro passes there, creating vibrationssoil." At the same time, he points out that the Museum and the depository should be close: "logistical losses, if the depository is located far away, will be significant."
2022 interview for the newspaper Kultura (08/01/2022) - Likhacheva declares the need to rid the Talyzin Estate of the permanent exhibition of the Museum and plans to build a new building monument……. Perhaps we will build a new building in another place and keep the estate as a branch, where we will show things that do not fit into the history of architecture.”
The zeal for the fate of the monument, which will be “killed” by the permanent exhibition of the Museum, but for some reason will not suffer from the exposure of things that “do not fit into the history of architecture”, inevitably leads to the thought - why should the Museum, which is building a new building “in another place”, have a branch, not related to the history of architecture, but requiring funds for the restoration of the estate and its further maintenance?
Rhetoric Likhacheva, in which for six years of her work as director of the Museum of Architecture. Shchusev, the intention to “build a depository” turned into a plan to build a “new building in another place”, becomes a tool for freeing the estate from the museum function, as was agreed in 2016.
And what will happen to the best Museum of Architecture in the world, representing an indivisible whole with the estate? But what's the difference - from the very beginning he "was stillborn"! Having opened the eyes of the world to the unviability of the national treasure, Likhacheva concentrated her efforts on using this fertilizer for her own prosperity. This is exactly what she promised to employees who were worried about what kind of life awaits the museum of architecture with the departure of Korobina: “And we will live fucking!”. Obviously, she made the same promise to the officials of the Ministry of Culture, who put her in charge of the legendary Pushkin Museum. Will this outrageous appointment save the museum of architecture, thus freed from the main force in cleaning up the estate near the Kremlin walls? Hardly. After all, a certain Shashkova was put in the vacated director's chair, about whom no one had ever heard anything. It is only known that she is “Likhacheva’s man” and, of course, she will not let her former boss down, who showed the way and explained the rules for boarding the “high-speed elevator”, which raised her, an unremarkable creature - oops! to the post of director of the federal museum.
To be continued