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Insider: Tatiana Parfionova« BACK « TO BEGINNING


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Jewellery by Artists: From Picasso to Koons, an exhibition organised by the culture and art portal

Insider's view · Europe · russian federation · Saint Petersburg

Insider: Tatiana Parfionova


Tatiana Parfionova is one of the best known Russian fashion designers. Her intricate interpretations of traditional national motifs are balancing between fashion and art. She lives in St Petersburg since 1964, and this is where she has opened her own fashion house.

"I would love to be able to visit St Petersburg for the first time. First I would have me taken blindfolded to Vasilievsky Island; the blindfold would only be removed at the very end of the Strelka spit, the very spot where the Bolshaya Neva (the Big Neva) and the Malaya Neva (the Small Neva) part their ways like two hands. It would be early morning, the city wrapped up in swaths of fog and clouds. And then I would have me taken to the northern façade of the Kazan Cathedral (Kazansky Sobor) - the half-circle colonnade of 96 columns. Then on to the Saint Isaac's Cathedral (Isaakiyevsky Sobor), but I would only be allowed to open my eyes once inside - to see all the fantastic paintings and mosaics. And then I would love to stand in the middle of the Trinity Bridge (the Troitsky Most) as if for the first time ever: built to mark the 200th anniversary of the city, it is one of the most beautiful bridges in the city and offers a magnificent view of seven other bridges. A lovely place for a walk is the Kruzenstern Embankment (Naberezhnaya Kruzenshterna), behind the Lieutenant Schmidt Embankment (Naberezhnaya Leitenanta Shmidta): this is where you will find the oldest buildings in the city, situated in a completely different way than elsewhere in St Peterburg. In keeping with a decree dating from the times of Peter the Great, the geometry of the building ensures there is enough space for a boat landing next to each house. A very special and very unique world, completely different from Saint Petersburg proper, is found in Kolomna. People still exchange greetings with passers-by there, and they are having problems with getting rid of the old communal flats: neighbours just do not wish to part... Pushkin and Alexander Blok have lived there. Contemporary famous denizens of Kolomna also get their own commemorative plaques: the artist Timur Novikov, composer Leonid Desyatnikov...
If I were in a good mood, I would definitely go for a walk in the Alexander Nevsky Cemetery: a nice stroll in a graveyard is always bracing... Or perhaps just wander the streets of St Petersburg, taking photographs of sculptural faces on the façades; they are so surprisingly diverse in their expression."

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