ZOMBIES IN HERMITAGE part 1
Mystery of Kandinsky picture.
Now I don’t remember who’s idea it was – to drink vodka and go to the Hermitage, mine or my friend’s and St.-Petersburg’s guest Sergey, he also played drums in a rock-band. To go to the Main Museum and make a wish, holding atlas’s toe – is everything, what we needed for a pleasant pastime.
And so, we are standing, holding big cold toes and looking at a same cold grey and lead sky and silently alchohol warms solar plexus. I wish I knew what had he wished, that wish must be worth of a twenty-four-hour shaking in a second-class sleeping carriage, but mine was practically about nothing – to have a good day.
A photocamera should help us to become familiar with art, and first shoots which it got, where in the museum yard – a foreign master with an unmemorable name exhibited cast-iron sculptures which looked like warped tree roots. These things were situated near a plate which explained that they were not tree roots at all.
Passing through swinging doors (wish I had known what a trick will they play on me!) I was aware of two things – I didn’t know the working hours of the Hermitage, last time I was there two years before, and the price of a ticket. Night before, finances were chenged to a great amount of unforgetable memories.
But it turned out, that we, as the citizens of our country, have some discount, but foreigners have to pay almost triple the price, which made my friend extremely happy. Discussing it, we unwittingly attended cloakroom and found ourselves directly inside.
It started to getting dim in the head and we had to concentrate our conciousness on an attempt to find a picture by Kandinsky, “composition number 6”, I remember it as it was now that below the name of the picture was written the year 1913, I’m not indifferent to the number “thirteen”, and now it’s time to tell you what had happened in that my last visit to the museum.
That windy and even more cold winter day I had a tooth out, it was not ill but it grew on the end of my jaw and disturbed me, and kind of subconsciousnessly I went to the Hermitage to fill in the extracted wisdom, everything would be ok, but I managed to catch a cold on my way, and it was local anaethetic to blame(I’m allergic to novocaine and they pricked something stronger), I wasn’t dressed warm enough, haven’t taken my scarf, and here you are, approaching to the museum started coughing.
You may not understand why I’m talking about my human weaknesses, but everything had started this way.
The fact that this motley picture was called “Composition 6” I’ve found out later, and that time I remembered only the date 1913, I can’t say that it is one of my favourite pictures, but I still feel some kind of a participation in its creation. Skimming its colored curls, I came too near to the masterpiece and (oh, my God!) sneezed on it!
People say that in crucial moments the time freezes and it seemed to me that shapeless clot of saliva and blood like in a slow-motion shot overcame those twenty centimetres to the surface of the canvas. Then an old aged hand grabbed me on my shoulder and like in a sleep I’ve heard: “Young man, step aside!” I think, it was one of the keepers.
In fact, I don’t know how these employees are called, but if in cemetries there are keepers so, analogically, in museums there are keepers too. Fortunately, I’ve made this act near the abstractionist picture, goggling through her thick glasses the keeper hadn’t noticed anything. Behind her back I made away without being noticed. Apparently, she hadn’t noticed, in what I then was sure, because I’ve seen in the global net photos, which were made after my visit, not accidentally, but interested in abstract and even in some degree became enlightened in this sphere.
And now I lead Sergey more closer(as it seemed to me) to the abstractionist section, for showing him my knowledge and to see “Composition VI” by Vasily Vasilievish Kandinsky live one more time.
Medieval Knackers in Hermitage. Well, well.
I should say that my friend plays in a band, whose other participants are all vegetarians, except him. And so we came across a hall of the medieval art, particularly to the huge pictures of some painter who had drawned a butcher cutting animals and birds carcasses. On every picture, and they all are not less than fifty inches by dioganal, skillfully portrayed the killing of flying, swimming and forestroaming beasts, accurately depicted in moments of death agony.
My friend laughed loudly, turned off the flash and started making pictures, I think, he’ll try to convince his band to put it on the cover of a new album. Speaking about taking photos – apparently, we had some privileges too, because despite prohibition inscriptions, nobody prevented from it.
There were no prohibitions also in the Leonardo Da Vinchi Hall, although there were crowds of guides with their flock. Hearing from a distance what are they talking about, I photographed with my disobidient arms the actions of my friend, who, evidently, got more attention than all the guides together.
And to no purpose, guides tell interesying things, for example, that woman with a baby, one of the earliest Da Vinchi works, and the baby is not actually a baby, the picture is called “Madonna and a Flower”, a genious Leonardo’s idea to call a baby a flower, and moreover..
And here I notice that a woman, who is telling it, started to stammer, her sight became still and it is obvious that something had happened, maybe a heart attack or epilepsy. But maybe not. Following the object that I was shooting I went to the other side of the hall, and there another guide was narrating about “Madonna Litta”, it seems to me that it is called by the name of its last owner, can it be that it was Madonna? But I didn’t manage to listen to the whole.
In clear and rehearsed speech appeared some incoherent words, some of which she repeated several times, it sounded approximately like this:
…his picturesque pictures of that period… picturesque pictures…Leonardo Da Vinchi pictures…these Leonardo’s pictures…they made Vinchi’s biography…
Leonardo Da Vinchi records are registrated…
Getting totally confused, she looked at me unwinking and then I’ve heard for the first time, she said it with an indifferent and lifeless voice:
In depth of innumerable corridors and spaces of the Hermitage echoed, repeated by many voices: …Well, well…Well, well…
Yes, I had to drink less.
By then began a slight panic, I said:
-Sergey, how are you, ok? It seems to me,that I’ve drunk too much, devil knows what I see.-
It was easy to move to the exit, but actually, crazy guides blocked our’s way, mumbling something incomprihensible, but on our way downstairs, not far from the exit, I felt that my ribs don’t feel the weight of the photocamera.
Oh, yes – I forgot it near Madonna, on a windowsill, what a fuck.
We’ve made an appointment, that he’ll be waiting for me outside, and I’ll go back, but I guessed by the photocamera owner’s face, that he doesn’t even dream to get back his polaroid.
Successfully passing through all the zombied Hermitage emploees, after half an hour of roaming I’ve finally found that windowsill, but the camera wasn’t there. There was a tourist standing nearby, due to his appearance we can guess that he was from Europe, I asked him: Are you spik english?Polaroid. – Showing him the place where I saw it last time. But I see that his eyes are zombied-superzombied and with an accent he says: -Polaroid? Well, well.-
And stopped dead, you cuold even grab his finger and make a wish. Phone grumbled in my pocket – Sergey was calling, meaning, stop searching, it’s useless, he had to go to the station.
and I fixed my glance on the zombietourist. –Kodak will be ok?-