On January 16, 2011 Publishing House “Lotus” (Kiev city) jointly with “Pantaleon the Healer” newspaper (Kiev city) held a true fete of culture and art on the basis of Kiev Russian Art Museum Subsidiary, in an ancient mansion of a famous Russian Maecenas of national education and public health (of the late nineteenth – early twentieth centuries), councilor of State – Semen Semenovich Mogylevtsev. There took place presentation of books distributed by Publishing house “Lotus”, concert of classical and folk music, and also – for only one day - an exhibition of unique painting “Agapit of Pechersk” by a popular writer and artist Anastasia Novykh.

Картина Анастасии Новых \

 

Agapit of Pechersk is a celebrated Saint, who was called Unmercenary Healer. He is considered the first doctor of Kievan Rus. He laid the foundations of medical practice under the Pechersk monastery. Now his relics are kept in the Near Caves of Kiev Pechersk Lavra. In 1986, a forensic medical expert Sergey Nikitin came from Moscow to study relics of Saints in Kiev. In the course of his research work of analyzing bone remains on the territory of Lavra, Sergey Nikitin was able to reconstruct actual appearance of some saints, including that of Agapit of Pechersk. Shortly after that, there appeared a unique painting “Agapit of Pechersk” by Anastasia Novykh, which depicts actual appearance of the First Doctor of Kievan Rus. It is for the first time that the portrait was exposed to public at large. Nonetheless, before this event many people had already had an opportunity to get aquatint with it owing to photos and books by Anastasia Novykh.

The exhibition of the painting “Agapit of Pechersk” by Anastasia Novykh took place in Kiev (Shelkovichnaya St. 17/2) not far from Presidential Palace, in the “White Hall” of the two-storied mansion of a nobleman, councilor of State, Semen Semenovich Mogylevtsev. Nowadays the building belongs to Kiev Russian Art Museum Subsidiary. People call it the “Chocolate house”.



 

Mysterious symbols of the ancient mansion of the nobleman, councilor of State, Semen Mogylevtsev (the building of Kiev Russian Art Museum Subsidiary). Such “seal” made by a triad of symbols can be found on the outside fa?ade of the “girl’s room” of the mansion, in the study of the host, and in the room for the host’s close friends. “Girl’s room” is at the top of the building and it is shaped in a form of a triangle.

Four lion heads “guard” the outside fa?ade of the “White Hall” intended for official receptions, balls and meetings as well as the “Italian Hall” (canteen).

 

Within an hour after the exhibition was opened, the museum could not accommodate all visitors. And in only 20 minutes a long queue of over 100 people formed near the building!

 

It was a true full house, a rebirth fete of the bygone glory of the renowned mansion build for charitable purposes, which once belonged to a wealthy Russian patron of the arts. During this one day over 3000 visitors came to the exhibition! This number is characteristic only of the world’s famous museums!

 

The old building of a well-known patron Semen Mogylevtsev has not gathered such a great number of visitors for quite a long time.

 

Before the exhibition was opened, a media-preview of the painting “Agapit of Pechersk” had been held for the journalists.

 

Journalists of a popular TV-channel “1+1” interviewed Director of the Russian Arts Museum Tatiyana Skirda about the exhibition of the painting.

 


The painting and the premises were closely guarded.


Journalists observed that during the entire exhibition day the painting and the mansion had been closely guarded by real professionals that are match, perhaps, only for presidential guard.

 

The painting by Anastasiya Novykh represents actual appearance of Saint Agapit of Pechersk that was reconstructed by the scientist and forensic medical expert Sergey Nikitin from Moscow in 1986. The appearance was reconstructed on the basis of anthropological research of the Saint’s relics that rest in the Near Caves of Kiev Pechersk Lavra.

 

During the exhibition the image of Agapit on the painting was changing in an amazing way. When looking at the portrait visitors of various ages noted that at times they saw a Saint elder, at times a young or a middle-aged man. And yet sometimes the face of Agapit seemed to be lit with dazzling light.

 

The painting “Agapit of Pechersk” by Anastasia Novykh displayed itself differently in an extraordinary way.

 

The writing in gold letters on the painting says:

«My True Father!

I set all my hopes only upon One You,

And I pray unto You, my Lord,

Only for salvation of my soul.

May Your Holy Will»

 

Everyone “communicated” with image of Agapit, depicted by Anastasia Novykh, in his or her own way. A unique feature of the painting is that the portrait amplifies what dominates in a person. This feature of the painting was observed by many visitors of the exhibition.

 

Visitors of the exhibition unanimously observed that the look of Agapit was amazingly alive, unusual, deep, as if reaching inmost of heart. One can’t help feeling as if a real, spiritually strong person is looking at you. The world art hasn`t known such kind of pictures!

 

Venerable Agapit of Pechersk, Unmercenary Healer, the “Healer from God” is considered the first doctor of Kievan Rus. He was a monk of Kiev Pechersk Lavra?, living in the 11th century. Agapit possessed great spiritual strength and healed even severe illnesses. His relics are also accredited with great salutary powers and are kept in the Near Caves of Kiev Pechersk Lavra in the underground Church of the Entry of the Mother of God into the Temple. The top photo illustrates true appearance of Agapit of Pechersk that was reconstructed in the course of research work in Lavra conducted by forensic medical expert from Moscow Sergey Nikitin in 1986. Three other photos portray the Holy Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Cyril. He visited the Near Caves of Kiev Pechersk Lavra on February 25, 2010 (the day of Ukrainian President inauguration of Victor Yanukovich), where he bowed down to the relics of Saints of the Caves, including the relics of Venerable Agapit of Pechersk.

 

Iconic image of St. Agapit of Pechersk.

 

People examining and taking photos of the image of St. Agapit of Pechersk.

 

Visitors taking photos of the painting using their mobile phones, each recorded photo looks different.

 

Agapit of Pechersk gave his kind warm look to every visitor.

 



The exhibition of the painting “Agapit of Pechersk” was attended by families with children.

 

A young sightseer at the exhibition of the painting “Agapit of Pechersk” by Anastasia Novykh.

 

 

A young sightseer at the exhibition of the painting “Agapit of Pechersk” by Anastasia Novykh.

 



Many young people visited the exhibition of the painting “Agapit of Pechersk” by Anastasia Novykh.

 

Big mirror in the “White hall” decorated with angels and doves.

 

Stucco moulding doves at the big mirror’s top in the “White hall”.

 

Visitors observing the painting “Agapit of Pechersk” by Anastasia Novykh.

 

By 10 o’clock, when the exhibition was officially opened, there gathered a queue of people. Some of them, as reported by journalists, came from afar. There were visitors from the near abroad: Belarus, Russia (Moscow, Saint-Petersburg, Saratov, even from Krasnoyarsk, and Vladivostok). There were guests who came from the far abroad too: Germany, Japan, Hungary. People from all around Ukraine visited the exhibition.

 

Journalists from national TV-channel “1+1” having interview with visitors of the exhibition of “Agapit of Pechersk” painting by Anastasia Novykh.

 

Photo exhibition of famous people – politicians, artists, businesspeople – visiting Near Caves of Kiev Pechersk Lavra, where reliquary with relics of Agapit of Pechersk is kept. Among the people on the photographs there are: President of the Russian Federation Dmitry A. Medvedev, President of the Ukraine Victor F. Yanukovich, legendary singer Alla B. Pugachova, 42nd President of the United States of America Bill Clinton and many others.

 

Address by organizers of the exhibition: Chief Editor of “Pantaleon the Healer” newspaper Anna Khatimlyanskaya and Director of Publishing House “Lotus” Oleg Rudenko.

 

At the book-stand of Publishing House “Lotus”.

 

Presenter of the event Ekaterina Tsiganchuk.



The exhibition of “Agapit of Pechersk” painting by Anastasia Novykh was held to light classical music as well as live instrument playing and singing.

 

Performance of a famous Kiev guitarist, producer, sound control supervisor, and composer Vadim Borisenko.

 

Performance of chamber singer, academic vocal class graduate of Kiev Music Institute of Glier – Irina Stetsenko.

 

Performance of a representative of contemporary Ukraine school of accordion players of “classic” and “variety” genres, repeated prize-winner of international competitions Oleg Mikituk.

 

Musical band “Space of music”. Sergei Moroz and Igor Yakubosky (guitar, author's love song) accompanied by marvelous singer, participant of international festivals Nadezhda Boyanovskaya (bandura, love song, folk song).
Classical and folk music concert performed by talented artistic people charmed the public.

 

Coordinators of the event (from right to left): Director of Kiev Russian Art Museum Subsidiary Tatyana Skirda, Director of Kiev Russian Art Museum Yury Vakulenko, Director of Publishing House “Lotus” Oleg Rudenko, Chief Editor of “Pantaleon the Healer” newspaper Anna Khatimlyanskaya, producer, sound control supervisor, composer, and guitarist Vadim Borisenko.

This exceptionally well-organized event became a pleasant surprise for many people as such a number of visitors (as we’ve mentioned above the exhibition attracted more than 3 thousand people in one day) is a record for Kiev museums. Only renowned international museums of the world may enjoy such attendance.