The Romanovs’ Art Of Survival

Anastasia Edel looks at the holdings of the last Russian tsar and his family: ‘Over the twentieth century, the Romanovs produced a vast artistic trove that few are aware of, since most of their creative output was meant for family consumption. Because the family was scattered around the world by the events of the revolution, that collection is currently dispersed among private archives, family albums, basements, under-the-bed boxes and, in rarer cases, museums and galleries. When studied as a whole—in as much as its fragmented nature affords—two persistent themes emerge. One is the Romanovs’ intense, penetrating view of nature. For centuries, nature exploration has been a favorite Romanov family pastime. In those inimitable Russian forests, mountains, and steppe, they found aesthetic pleasure, refuge, and, at times, salvation.’

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