Voices from Russia

Saturday, 25 October 2014

A Photo Essay… Furry Custodians of the Hermitage Treasures

00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 01. 25.10.14

The Hermitage cats are a living symbol of St Petersburg. Not content with simply showing their pictures, this series offers the lowdown on each of them. The first is Assol, at the Nicholas Staircase, a spruce and sociable, yet bashful, young lady. Evening often finds her on the Palace Embankment, gazing pensively at the ships gliding along the Neva.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 02. 25.10.14

Luchik, in the Winter Palace. A striking Siberian tomcat, his fur boasts the hue of what people in Piter call the “Neva Masquerade” hue. An avid football fan, on match day he always bags the best spot to watch his favourite side, FK Zenit.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 03. 25.10.14

Pingva, in the Pavilion Hall. An elderly cat robed in austere black-and-white, descended from palace stock. This cat was born to guard the Hermitage. The modest sombre black-and-white livery is evidence of her aristocratic roots. She shuns feline company in favour of solitude, preferring to live apart from her fellows in the cattery.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 04. 25.10.14

Gauguin, in Palace Square, across from the General Staff building. This brightly coloured cat seems to have sprung from a canvas by the French painter himself. Life’s travails developed in him the most extraordinary skills. Gauguin knows only too well where the provisions are and how to get them, using his ability to open (and close!) any door.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 05. 25.10.14

Francesca, on the Jordan Staircase. Proud of her famous namesake, she performs her own version of arias from the eponymous opera in the dead of night in the museum vaults. Anyone who strokes her trichromatic coat gets special treatment.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 06. 25.10.14

Vaksa, on the Jordan Staircase. The demure Vaksa suffers from poor eyesight; she isn’t overly fond of strangers, and rarely leaves the Hermitage grounds. However, she’s never short of work… fondly rubbing herself against the feet of employees, this near-wholly black cat has polished their shoes to a shine for many years.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 07. 25.10.14

Kisanya, in the Gallery of the History of Ancient Painting. A cordial hostess, Kisanya pays attention to all guests of the Hermitage, who, in summer, obligingly help this voluble gourmet acquire a rounded figure.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 08. 25.10.14

Lipa, on  Soviet Staircase. The self-sufficient Lipa is the very essence of catness, taking herself for strolls and preferring to observe proceedings from the shelter of a tree.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 09. 25.10.14

Rio-Rita, near the Alexander Column. A graceful, expressive, and unusually melodious Abyssinian cat with a wild hue. In anticipation of human caresses, her body becomes like a bouncing ball, her tail and hind legs performing a kind of dance. When she rubs up against your legs, resistance is futile.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 10. 25.10.14

Tikhon, in the Large Italian Skylight Hall. Named after the pagan god of fate, old-timer Tikhon is extremely discreet and thorough. As fate itself would have it, they brought Tikhon from the General Staff building to the Great Hermitage, where he became the unofficial leader of all the palace cats.

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00 hermitage cats. russia. st petersburg. 11. 25.10.14

Caspar, in the Raphael Loggias. A legendary guard and photographic star, he often wanders into camera shots of the most vivid landscapes. Named after German landscape artist Caspar David Friedrich, this romantic feline soul chooses the most picturesque surroundings for his perambulations.

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14 October 2014

Yuri Molodkovets

Russia Behind the Headlines

http://rbth.com/multimedia/pictures/2014/10/14/12_custodians_of_the_hermitage_treasures_40589.html

25 October 2014. My life in Russia: Bobby Rome from Virginia… Great Vid About an American Expat in Piter

00 Bobby Rome 02. russia. football. 25.10.14

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click here for the page with the vid

Bobby Rome is a professional football player from Virginia. For several years, Bobby has been in St Petersburg playing for the Vikings. Bobby’s wife Gabrielle convinced him to move to Russia, “I wanted him to pursue his dreams, because I know he has a lot of potential. I had to try to push and convince him… ‘Maybe we should take this risk, maybe we should take this leap of faith and go after it? We only live once, why not take full advantage of it?'”. As Bobby said, it was one of the best decisions he’s ever made.

21 October 2014

Russia Behind the Headlines

http://rbth.com/multimedia/video/2014/10/21/my_life_in_russia_bobby_rome_from_virginia_usa_40757.html

 

Monday, 22 September 2014

22 September 2014. “Supermoon” in Piter

00 Supermoon in St Petersburg RUSSIA. 22.09.14

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The full moon rises in the sky above the domes of the Smolny Cathedral in St Petersburg on Monday, 8 September 2014. Monday night’s full moon, also known as a Harvest Moon, will be the third and final “supermoon” of 2014. The phenomenon, which scientists call a “perigee moon”, occurs when the moon is near the horizon and appears larger and brighter than other full moons. Italian architect Francesco Bartolomeo Rastrelli built the Smolny convent’s main church between 1748 and 1764, which is now a major landmark in Piter.

BMD

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Piter Lawmaker Wants Russia to Ban “Conchita Wurst”

Inessa Safronova. Mankind Without the Cross. 2002

Mankind Without the Cross

Inessa Safronova

2002

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Vitaly Milonov, a deputy of the Legislative Assembly of St Petersburg, appealed to Minister of Culture Vladimir Medina to bar Austrian singer Thomas Neuwirth (better known as Conchita Wurst) from entering the Russian Federation. Milonov put forth his proposal after the Eurovision Song Contest winner announced the start of an international tour, including plans to visit Russia, saying, “The Russian government shouldn’t allow this transvestite to enter our country. This ‘Bearded Woman’ is a gross insult to all the peoples of Russia”. Milonov has a reputation for proposing high-profile bills and proposals. In February 2012, he submitted a draft law in the Federal City of St Petersburg, later adopted, establishing fines for promoting paedophilia and homosexuality. In December 2012, he accused Lady Gaga and Madonna of violating Russian visa regulations.

Editor:

“Conchita Wurst” is shameless and shameful, but we shouldn’t obsess over the situation. Russia should ban their entry and leave it at that. I don’t even like posting pictures of this person. I think that all decent people agree with me. Do have a care with this topic if you live in the West… certain lobbies are very powerful and can cause you great upset and trouble. Choose your arguments well… this is something best left unmentioned. However, the usual cast of suspects (both “left” and “right”) will have a field day. Stay out of the kids’ food fight… it’ll be much Sturm und Drang signifying nothing. I don’t know who’s worse… the so-called “religious” or the so-called “activists”. In my mind, I don’t care much for either.

Need I say more?

BMD

12 May 2014

ITAR-TASS

http://itar-tass.com/spb-news/1180121

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