Imperial Stroganov College

The history

One of the first educational institutions in the industrial and applied arts sphere - the Imperial Stroganov Central Higher Industrial and Applied Arts College was founded in Moscow on October 31, 1825 by the well-known collector and philanthropist Count Sergei Stroganov and was originally called the "The School of drawing as applied to crafts”.
The School modelled on the Paris "Ecole du dessin" pattern debut, that was created with the aim "to provide craftsmen and merchants with the opportunities to improve their products with the assistance of science and art", was stemmed from the national culture aspirations and the country socio-economic development in that period, when the established art crafts gave place to the industrial production. Improvement of the Russian products quality, implementation of the national style, drawing the line with foreign masters, whose works flooded the Russian market with goods at that period, became its major task.
In the view of Stroganov, to reverse the trend in the Russian art industry and do away with the domestic market commoditization by the foreign products was realizable only by improving the home-produced items quality. Decent education of the local drawing artists and artisans, and what is more – beginning in the early age is vital to accomplish this. “By the example of enlightened West-European states, it is necessary to concern with the issue of the general education advancement as well as the special artistic education of artisans, since only in these settings we can count on the development of inborn artistic skills and proficiency to create indigenous works. Only in this way the Russian art industry will achieve high level of perfection and will promote the national welfare development”, - wrote the Count. “The aim of this institution is to give young people (from 10 to 16 years old), who are addicted to all kinds of crafts and practical skills the opportunity to learn the skills of drawing, without which no artisan can attain perfection in his creative work".
Three streams (classes) were available in School at the start-up period: "architectural technical drawing and practical geometry, with areas that were contingent with it (vehicles’ figuring, etc.)", "human and animal figure construction", "flowers and decorations figuring”. Lessons in each class were held twice a week for two hours; the rest of the time, the students worked in factories and workshops.
In 1843, Count Sergei Stroganov passed the School over to the state. It was reorganized into the Second Drawing School. In 1860, it was incorporated with the First Drawing School into the Stroganov College for Technical Drawing and its Regulations were approves. Weaving and fast-printing workshops, plaster, painting and lithographic workshops were organised additionally, and ceramic workshop was opened a bit later, circa 1867.
At the turn of the 19th – 20th centuries, the College experienced a resurrection. On February 23, 1900 in honor of its 75th anniversary, the School was renamed into the Imperial Stroganov Central Higher Industrial and Applied Arts College and passed under the patronage of Grand Duchess Elizabeth Feodorovna of Russia, and gained the right to place the State Coat of Arms on its products. The College became one of the major art centres in Russia. New workshops were opened in those years - foundry, chasing and assembling, enamel, galvanoplastic and jewelry. The leading Russian architects, painters and sculptors conducted classes there - Mikhail Vrubel, Fyodor Schechtel, Alexey Shchusev, Konstantin Korovin, Sergei Ivanov, Abram Arkhipov, Andrey Andreev. The sons of the famous Moscow enamel master Feodor Rückert, the painters from the Moscow branch of the Fabergé firm - M. Ivanov and S. Adrianov, the sons of jewelry firms and factories founders – G. Cheryatov and P. Ovchinnikov were among the students there.
Since 1862, the College participated in all prestigious Russian and international exhibitions and received the highest awards - silver medal at the 1867 International Exposition in Paris, honorary diplomas at the 1873 Vienna World's Fair and the 1876 Centennial International Exhibition, the Grand Prix at the 1900 Paris Exposition. The Stroganov College enjoyed great success at the 1911 Turin exhibition.
Imperial Stroganov College produced customized items for private clients, cities, municipal regions, the Imperial family members. Many leading art industry enterprises and firms, Russian artisan workshops work side by side with the College.
The College production was sold in the store under the of Industrial and Applied Arts museum that was established at the College for educational purposes in 1864 and was the first Moscow museum open for visiting by public at large in 1868.
In 1918, the Imperial Stroganov College was reformed into The First Free State Art workshops. In 1920, they were amalgamated with the Second Free State Art workshops into the Higher Art and Technical workshops that was reorganised into the Art and Technical Institute and had a very short-lived existence from 1928 to 1930, when it was reformed once more and four Institutes were opened on its basis – the Architectural institute, the Art, the Printing and Publishing (Polygraphic) institute, and the Textile institute. I n 1945, the Stroganov College was reconstructed under the name of Moscow Higher Industrial and Applied Arts College (the former Stroganov). In 1992, it was renamed to Moscow Industrial and Applied Arts Institute, named after Stroganov. Currently, this educational institution is renamed as Moscow State Stroganov Academy of Industrial and Applied Arts and it turns out designers, decorative, applied and monumental art painters and sculptors.

1. History of the Stroganov Academy: site. - URL:
2. Carl Faberge and the Russian Renaissance era. M., 2019
3. Fedunov S.N. The Stroganov School art metal of the second half of the 19th – early 20th centuries: prerequisites for creation, stylistic features and shape-generating principles: the thesis: 17.00.04 [Moscow State Art and Industrial Institute named after S.G. Stroganov]. - Moscow, 2008.

Exhibits in the Museum Collection