Paint Russia!

This is an eleven day robust program of location painting, touring art museums and learning about the Russian culture in both Moscow and St. Petersburg. Museum experts will lecture in the museums, giving you the background on Russian and European artists,  the art movements, painting techniques and color theory.  You have the opportunity to attend the Bolshoi and Mariinsky Theaters. 

The Art Lover's Tour - 11 Day is the companion tour for the non-painting spouse. 

Small Group: 4-12
Length:  11 Days
Dates:  August 4-15, 2017
Meals:  Breakfast & Lunch

Early Bird Sign Up:  March 27, 2017
Final Deadline to Sign Up: May 15, 2017

2017 – Itinerary

August 4  |  Arrival

Arrival at a Moscow airport:  SVO, DME, VKO
Transfer to the hotel in a private car

August 5  |  Subway Tour, Tretyakov Gallery, Convent and Painting

Tretyakov Gallery
The Tretyakov Gallery contains one of the greatest collection of Russian art in the world.  The Gallery houses over 130,000 collections of Russian art and artifacts ranging from the eleventh to the early twentieth century. Among these collections are some of the greatest Russian masters of all time, which include works by Ilya Repin and Ivan Kramskoy. Russian art movements we will see and discuss include:  sentimentalism, romanticism, critical realism, Wanderers, realism, lyrical landscape, Russian Impressionism, World of Art (Mir Iskusstva), Russian Symbolism, and pronto avant-garde.


  • Tour Revolutionary Subway Tunnel
  • Tretyakov Gallery
  • Marfo-Mariinsky Convent
  • Painting in the old district of Moscow or go back to the Tretyakov Gallery

August 6  |  Painting the Kremlin, New Tretyakov Gallery, Bolshoi Theater

The New Tretyakov Gallery
The New Tretyakov Gallery houses the only permanent exhibition of twentieth century Russian art in the country. It displays works by Russian avant-garde masters from the 1900s-1920s who are famous all over the world, such as Kazmir Malevich,  Wassily Kandinsky,  Marc Chagall, Pavel Filonov and Lyubov Popova. These works were followed later by Socialist Realism during the 1930s-1950s. The works by artists of the Severe Style from the 1960s are demonstrated in parallel with "underground" art, which started the "second wave" of Russian avant-garde. The exhibition is completed by works from the 1980s-1990s.


  • Painting with view of the Kremlin Territories
  • New Tretyakov Gallery
  • Evening:  Opportunity to attend the Bolshoi Theater


August 7|  Painting and Institute of Russian Realist Art

Institute of Russian Realist Art
Way outside the city center of Moscow sits a rather modest museum that contains one of the best collections of the Russian realist school of painting of the twentieth century. The museum is known as the Institute of Russian Realist Art (IRRA) contains approximately five-hundred works of Russian and Soviet art. The collection begins with Soviet Realism and ends with contemporary work from artists living today. It is an interesting collection that chronicles Russia’s political history with Stalin’s propaganda art, the Great Patriotic War and Khrushchev’s “thaw.” This fabulous collection shows us how these Russian artists interpreted the world in which they lived.


  • Painting in the Arabat area in the morning
  • Institute of Russian Realist Art     

August 8  |  Cathedral of Christ the Savior, Pushkin Museum and Painting

Pushkin Museum of Fine Art
The collection at the Pushkin Museum consists of over 670,000 works that span three buildings; making it one of the largest museums in the world, the second largest in Russia after the Hermitage Museum. We are going to skip the main building and head straight over to the European building, where you will see one of the most expensive collections in the world of nineteenth and twentieth century European art. This world-famous collection includes major works by: Monet, Renoir, Degas, Gauguin, Van Gogh, Cezanne, Matisse, and Picasso.


  • Cathedral of Christ the Savior
  • Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts European Building
  • Painting around Cathedral of Christ the Savior


August 9  |  Travel to St. Petersburg

  • Train to St. Petersburg – Picnic lunch on train
  • Arrive in St. Petersburg

August 10  |  Hermitage Museum - Winter Palace

Hermitage Museum
The State Hermitage Museum first opened to the public in 1852, making it one of the oldest and most prestigious museums in the world.  By the end of the eighteenth century the Hermitage was already one of Europe’s finest museums. The initial collection was owned by Catherine the Great, who defined the trends in collecting and set high standards that have been impossible to ignore ever since. We will spend the majority of the day discussing artwork in the Winter Palace, which includes these art movements:  Renaissance, mannerism, baroque and gothic.


  • Hermitage Museum's Winter Palace

August 11  |  Hermitage Museum – General Staff Building

Hermitage Museum
In 2014 the Hermitage Museum opened a new wing in the General Staff Building directly across from the Winter Palace. This new wing consists of five courtyards and eight-hundred rooms all dedicated to the art from the nineteenth to twenty-first centuries. House in this building includes Russia's huge collection of impressionist and post-impressionist work; as well as exemplary examples of neo-classical, romanticism. Barizon School, and an extensive collection of German art from the 1800s.


  • Hermitage Museum – General Staff Building

August 12   |  Russian Museum

Russian Museum
The State Russian Museum is the largest museum of Russian art in the world, housing works by famous artists such as Nicolai Fechin, Valentin Serov, Ilya Repin, Konstantin Makovsky, Philipp Malyavin and Isaak Levitan to name a few. This museum has collected the crème de la crème of master works by Russian artists, ranging from historic to contemporary times. The museum has gained a reputation of world importance due to its outstanding collection of not only Russian figurative painting, but also Russian Impressionism.


  • Russian Museum
    – Lecture:  Russian art of 19th-20th centuries

August 13  |  Repin Institute and Mariinsky Theater

Repin Institute of the Arts
Established in 1789 by Catherine the Great, the Repin Institute of Arts contains a small museum of thesis work by many of its well-known graduates. Today the Institute is the largest arts educational institution in Russia. For almost two and a half centuries the Institute has been promoting the traditional and classical fine art of Russia and plays a key part in the preservation of its native style.


  • Repin Institute Museum
  • Tour Russian artist's studio and chat
  • Painting along the Neva River or free time
  • Opportunity to go to the Mariinsky Theater

August 14  |  Painting, Cathedrals and Faberge Museum

  • Painting at Church on the Spilled Blood
  • Kazan Cathedral Tour
  • Church on the Spilled Blood Tour
  • Faberge Museum Tour

August 15  |  Return Home   

Transportation from hotel to St. Petersburg’s Pulkovo Airport (LED) in a private car

Add-on Itinerary

Instead of returning home on August 15th you can add the following two days to your trip.

August 15   |  Catherine's Summer Palace and Peterhof Garden Tour

  • Catherine’s Summer Palace Tour
  • Peterhof Park tour

August 16   |  City Tour, Hermitage Museum, Cathedrals

  • Hermitage Museum
    – Russian Guide gives a tour of the gala rooms and private quarters
  • City Sight Seeing Tour by boat
  • Tour of St. Isaac’s Cathedral

August 17  |  Return Home   

Transportation from hotel to St. Petersburg’s Pulkovo Airport (LED) in a private car

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Small Group Program

This program will be a small group made up of four to twelve people. This will give you the opportunity to spend more time on the things you want to see and discuss. A rare opportunity to spend your days with a university expert allowing you to ask questions and have meaningful conversations.