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Ivanov-Shits, Illarion Aleksandrovich

Ivanov-Shits, Illarion Aleksandrovich (1865–1937). Russian architect. By the 1890s he was one of the most fashionable designers working in Moscow, where his Belkin and Martyanov houses helped to make his name. From c.1898 his work was strongly influenced by that of Otto Wagner, notably at the Hirsh Theatre and Restaurant (1898–1902—destroyed), the superb Merchants' Club (1905–9), and the State Savings Bank (1913–14—with a huge glass-roofed banking-hall). From 1900 he was a member of Moscow City's Construction Council, which was primarily concerned to meet the needs of the poor: among his works for those purposes may be cited the House of the People (1901–3), the Tea-Room Theatre, Lefortovo District, and other buildings with auditoria (all of similar dates). His other Classicizing-Jugendstil essays include the Shanyavsky People's University (1910–13), and the Soldatenkovskaya (now Botkinskaya) City Hospital (1908–12). From c.1911 his architecture became more severe and Neo-Classical (e.g. Cas'yanov and Orlov houses), Moscow City Bank (1992–5), and the Weisbrot Hospital (1923–6). He flirted with Constructivism with the Sanatorium, Barvikh, near Moscow (1920s), but reverted to Neo-Classicism from c.1930 (e.g. his work on Ton's (1838–49) Andreyevsky and Aleksandrovsky Halls in the Kremlin Palace (1932–4), which became the Assembly Hall of the Supreme Soviet). He was clearly able to accommodate himself successfully to working from the 1890s to the 1930s, under very different regimes. He is one of the most seriously underrated Russian architects, whose work is virtually unknown in the West.


Raeburn (ed.) (1991);
Stroitel'stvo: arkhitektura Moskvy, iv (1986), 24–6;
Jane Turner (1996)

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