If you have visited St. Petersburg before and been on the tours to see sumptuous palaces and gorgeous gardens then, on your next visit try and make time to visit this rather special museum, which is more of an alter to modern art than a dusty old museum.
Erarta, besides being a museum, also includes commercial galleries, a workshop, publishing and educational programmes, as well as promoting various cultural events and activities.
Erarta established to try and collect, display and promote the most original and skillful of contemporary artists. To promote these ideals the museum’s activities include exhibition projects, a changing museum catalogue as well as tours and educational programmes. The Erarta Museum offers the widest of audiences the opportunity to discover contemporary art and to find the works of art that most interests them. There is plenty to chose from as the museum has around 2,000 works by contemporary artists. Of course, being an innovative center of art the museum also displays drawings, sculptures, installations, and other facets of modern art.
Erarta currently promotes over 140 artists representing different generations and trends in contemporary art. In the selection of works for its collection Erarta doesn’t just focus on famous name artists or any international ratings. Well known does not necessarily better. Erarta’s mission is to find those of contemporary artists whose works outlive their creators, and will delight audience a century or more later.
Gallery Erarta’s main aim is to promote contemporary Russian art professionals to art connoisseurs as well as to a worldwide audience. With interest in art blossoming through media channels around the world, the museum has taken on the task of changing the old fashioned perception of Russian art and delights in breaking down those stereotypes and displaying the wide range of artistic work by today’s Russian artists.
Erarta does not limit itself to any particular trend in contemporary art but concentrate the freedom of expression of the artist, the originality of their ideas and concepts, and the skill of their implementation in their chosen material. The galleries display works by non-conformist artists, who commenced their artistic career in the 1950 – 1960’s Soviet Union, as well as those from the new, post-perestroika Russia. Erata has also concentrated on young artists that have appeared on the art scene of the 2000s. they acquire the work of contemporary artists for the museum’s collection, organize commercial exhibitions and competitions as well as working with different organizations representing the field of culture and contemporary art.
Erarta’s catalogue is ‘Serials’ which is a full colour product in a convenient size and of modern design. They have tried to make it attractive to readers of different ages and interests. Each catalog includes a selection of works by contemporary artists, united by a common theme, and each work is accompanied by text written by art historians, writers, philosophers or just visitors using their own words. The museum produces a new catalogue for every new group or solo exhibition in the galleries.
The museum publishes it’s own magazine called, not surprisingly ‘Erarta’. This informative publication is obviously devoted to contemporary art and is distributed to a wide range of art fans. The purpose of the magazine is to help the reader discover the world of art in all its ambiguity, to promote the discussion of complex issues pertaining to art and to highlight some of the controversial moments in the history of art and contemporary culture.
Each issue will focus on one of the Russian artists whose work is exhibited in the museum as well as information about new exhibitions and activities planned.
Catalogues and magazines are available in the reference library next to the art shop in the lobby on the first floor and from the gift shop or on the website.
As you may have already guessed, Erata has an online shop where you can buy reproductions of works from the museum’s collection.
The museum’s gift shop is situated on the first floor displaying a wide range of designer souvenirs. Erarta’s brand named products are especially interesting. Any of the items sold in the shop are available to order on their website.
Eating & Refreshments
In the basement you will find the Aivazovsky Restaurant which offers a selection of Russian and European dishes. The АRTpoint café is positioned in the central part of the third floor. This same floor is home to the Royal Café which sometimes has live music.