Chizhov, Matvey Afanasievich, Russian sculptor, born on November 10 (22), 1838, village Pudovo, Moscow region, died on May 27 (June 9), 1916 in Petrograd.
A son of a peasant-stonecutter. Studied in Moscow at Stroganov school (1856-1857) under V.S. Borovskiy. Continued his education at Moscow School of painting and sculpture (1857-1859) under N.A. Ramazanov. Entered the Imperial Academy of Fine Arts for the master-class of N.S. Pimenov in 1860. Worked on the monument "Millennium of Russia" in Novgorod under M. O. Mikeshin in 1860-1862. Began to study systematically at the Academy of Fine Arts in 1863; finished the class of P. K. Klodt 1867. Was repeatedly awarded with small and big silver and gold medals: in 1859 for the bas-relief “The Fighters" (plaster, Scientific Research Museum of the Russian Art Academy) – with a small silver medal for the sculptural group "Citizen of Kiev with the Bridle, Running through the camp of Petchenegs (bronze, State Russian Museum) in 1865.
Was awarded with a large gold medal for the bas-relief "Resurrection of the Son of the Widow from Nain” (plaster, Scientific Research Museum of the Russian Art Academy), received the title of the first degree artist and a pensioner's right to travel abroad in 1867. Received the status of the pensioner of the Imperial Academy of Fine Arts in Rome in 1868-1874. Was ranked the academician for the sculptural groups "The Blind Man’s Bluff Game” and "The First Love" in 1873. Received gold medal for the composition “The Farmer in Trouble" in 1874; was awarded with the medal "Souvenir reconnaissant de M-me Le Brun" for the statue “Playful girl” ("Rezvushka"). Was twice awarded with medals at the international exhibitions: in Vienna in 1873 – a gold medal "Für die Kunst"; and in 1878 in Paris - with the Gold medal of the third degree. Taught at the Central college for Technical drawing, named after Baron Alexander von Stieglitz in St. Petersburg (1879-1909). Worked in the field of monumental and genre sculpture, created series of portrait busts. In the 1890s participated in the competitions for the monument to A. S. Pushkin in Tsarskoye Selo, in 1892 for the monument to Admiral P. S. Nakhimov in Sevastopol, and to Ekaterina II in Nakhichevan. Erected a monument to Nicholas II in Kiev following the project of M. A. Chizhov in 1896. Executed portrait medallions for the tomb of Moscow Conservatory founder N. G. Rubinstein in Danilovsky cemetery in Moscow (1899, not preserved) and a portrait medallion of writer D. V. Grigorovich (1902, State Museum of Urban Sculpture, Literary planked footway (Literatoskie Mostki).