The only Medalist Class in Russia has been launched in Saint Petersburg 04.10.2016
A press-tour for representatives of the mass media introducing the work of the only Medalist Class in Russia took place on October 4. Arkady Trachuk, General Director of Goznak, Semen Mikhailovskiy, acting Rector of the Saint Petersburg State Academic Institute of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture named after I.E. Repin, Alexander Baklanov, Head Artist of the Design Center of Goznak, People’s Artist of Russia, an Academician, a professor of the Sculpture Department of the Saint Petersburg State Academic Institute of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture named after I.E. Repin, took part in the event.
In his speech of welcome, Arkady Trachuk dramatized the importance of the event and announced a new creative competition “Let us preserve our world” orghanized by Goznak for the students of Repin’s Institute. This time the students wishing to test their skills and talents in the medal art will create works dedicated to the Year of Ecology.
Alexander Baklanov conducted a tour around the Medalist Class. The journalists were able to meet the students, observe the main stages of the work of a medal artist. There was an opportunity for those wishing to take the medal tools and try to apply them.
The journalists who took part in the press-tour could visit The Mint Exhibition Center and the History of Money Exposition that started working in the normal mode on October 1.
For the first time, the Medalist Class at the Academy of Arts was created in Saint Petersburg at the end of the 18th century. However, in the 1920s the professional training of medal artists in Russia was practically stopped. After that, the peculiarities of working with coins and medals was only taught at the production site. Re-opening of the Medalist Class as part of the Institute of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture named after I.E. Repin (it is a new personal workshop at the Sculpture Department) revives the tradition of a professional approach to medal artists training.
Lessons at the personal workshops at Repin’s Institute are started at the third year. The students will study not only drawing, sculpture and composition (taking into account the medal art specifics), but also the medal production technology, engraving, heraldry and the medal art history at the Medalist Class.
Alexander Baklanov, Head Artist of the Design Center of Goznak, has been teaching at the Sculpture Department of the Institute of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture named after I.E. Repin for more than 10 years already. Opening of the Medalist Class is his old idea supported by the management of both the Institute and Goznak. The premises in Nikolskaya Kurtina of the Peter and Paul Fortress where the Medalist Class started working, belong to the Saint Petersburg Mint – Branch of Goznak. Auxiliary services of the mint were located there beforehand. Now, there are two spacious halls equipped with all necessary things for training at the Medalist Class (the total area is about 200 square meters). There are also showcases for holding exhibitions of students’ works here.
According to Alexander Baklanov, the medal artists should be polymathic specialists today. They should be able to draw, model, work using the modern computer 3D-modelling programs, know the peculiarities of working with the tools and metal treatment. Goznak and other enterprises have a demand for specialists of the kind.
Opening of the unique educational space of the Medalist Class took place on September 27 in a special way from the point of view of a secular observer, but seamlessly for a believing craftsman of the medal art – with a prayer and consecration of the premises held by Amvrosiy, Rector of the Ecclesiastical Academy, Archbishop of Peterhof.
In his appeal to Head of the Medalist Class and his pupils, Amvrosiy Archbishop of Peterhof said wonderful words, “… The beauty in this world is only a reflection of the celestial beauty coming to our world in the visible way by virtue of talents of the people who receive them at birth and multiply them during their life with their own individual labor”.
Alexander Baklanov is a true believer. The craftsman is connected with the Ecclesiastical Academy with a long-standing fellowship – it was he who helped to create the artistic finish of the henchman’s certificates of merit and the reciter’s certificates as well as the sign of the Ecclesiastical Academy Graduate given for the first time at the end of 2015-16 academic year.
Alexander Vasilievich Baklanov has been a member (academician) of the Russian Academy of Arts. He teaches at the Institute of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture named after I.E. Repin at the Academy of Arts and at the Saint Petersburg State Pedagogical University named After A.I. Gertsen.
He has been working at the Leningrad (now Saint Petersburg) Mint of Goznak since 1979. Since 1987, he has been the Head Artist of the Leningrad (Saint Petersburg) Mint. In 2007 he was appointed Head Artist of the Design Center of Goznak.
Alexander Baklanov’s works are known to every Russian citizen – he is the author of the Russian coins in circulation today, from 1 kopeck to 5 roubles.
In the creative portfolio of Alexander Baklanov, there are over 600 medal works. Including the design of the commemorative coins of the Bank of Russia dedicated to the 22nd Olympic Winter Games of 2014 in the city of Sochi.
The projects of commemorative medals and coins Alexander Baklanov developed have brought him world fame.
Alexander Baklanov is the author of the design of the star and signs of Order “For Merit to the Fatherland”, medals of A.V. Suvorov, A.S. Pushkin, “The 300th anniversary of the Russian Fleet”, “The 50th anniversary of Victory in the Great Patriotic war”, order “For Naval Merits”. The Russian awards – the Crosses of St. Andrew and St. George – were reconstructed with his help. Medals in Germany, Italy, Norway, Finland were struck according to A. Baklanov’s projects.
Press-Service of Goznak