Tue, Apr 16, 2019 - Page 13 News List

The mystic and the dictator

The National Palace Museum’s debt to Russian painter Nicholas Roerich

By James Baron  /  Contributing reporter

In Russia, claims of cult-like activity against the ICR were cited as a justification for state seizure of the Moscow museum’s premises and confiscation of its works in 2017. With the ICR reporting vandalism and damage, one can only imagine how Roerich would have felt.

Obsessed with ancient culture, as well as his transcendental role in its preservation, Roerich was tireless in his endeavors. For a brief moment in war-torn China, his interests coincided with those of its failing leader. For Sinophiles, art lovers or indeed anyone concerned with cultural heritage, this meeting of minds was a blessing.

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