The Pushkinsky Cinema was built to display the most important cinematic productions in Russia. Built at Pushkin Square, it became the landmark of the country’s film festivals, a palace for the Moscow International Film Festivals (MIFF) for movie protagonists and moviegoers from Moscow and abroad.
Our proposal for the cinema’s architectural shape is dictated by three main requirements: visual contact with the Pushkin Square has to be maintained, the Pushkinsky Cinema’s original architects’ vision is displayed in its entirety and the building has to adapt to the historical surrounding amid the historic, busiest square of Moscow. The measure of performance is relative to each project’s constraints and aspirations. The Pushkinsky Jewel vision exacts sophisticated demands: it must serve as a key driver in the Pushkin Square new Masterplan, embody best sustainable practices, adhere strictly to budget, and most importantly, exhibit and incubate design for the Pushkinsky Cinema.
Before explaining about our design, we discuss the inspiration. Paying tribute to the 19th century author, which the square was named after, Pushkin blended Old Slavonic with vernacular Russian into the rich, melancholic language. Pushkin’s Romantic contemporaries and poetries were central representative of The Age of Romanticism in Russian literature.
Alexander Pushkin introduced Russia to all European literary genres as well as opened natural speech and foreign influences to create modern poetic Russian. Though his life was succinct, he left a legacy of nearly every literary genre of today: lyric poetry, narrative poetry, the novel, the short story, the drama, the critical essay, and even the personal letter. Pushkin’s intelligence, sharpness of his opinion, his devotion to romanticism, realistic thinking and incredible historical and political intuition make him one of the greatest Russian national jewels.
It is his life quite simply prompted the idea that, if staged correctly, we would commemorate a new Pushkinsky Cinema that could accompany his words.
At the heart of the Pushkin Square is a glass ‘jewel’ box, specially designed to receive, preserve and display the cinema’s entire architecture. At its base, the cinema seems to ‘float’ on more than 25 pillars, which are extraordinary setting for the site’s functional purposes. On the first floor is the grand ‘Walk-around Gallery’, which now finds itself from the sanctuaries discovered from the original unused space. The Walk-around Gallery will be twenty-four meters high and naturally lit, containing the magnificent Pushkinsky Cinema, which decorated the first MIFF Palace at Pushkin Square.
The Pushkinsky Jewel’s grand Walk-around Gallery directly links the cinema to the landmark square urban fabric, allowing the city of Moscow can inscribe its visions. The visual link between the Pushkinsky Cinema and the Pushkin Square is achieved through the glass curtain walls/ceiling using DuPont™ SentryGlas® structural interlayer. By enclosing the balcony space currently exposed, visitors can enjoy a breathtaking view of the square, of its historic surrounding mini-park and monument under any weather and climate.
DuPont™ SentryGlas® structural interlayer’s are chosen, among others, due to its protection against wind, weather and impact protection. By utilizing coated low-E glass, we increase the building overall energy efficiency – it can assist in engineering more effective thermal insulation and controlling the transmittance of V radiation. DuPont™ SentryGlas®, offering long-term durability even when edges are exposed to weather and less susceptible to moisture intrusion, and remaining free from clouding even after years of service, makes our specification choice ideal.
The existing glass panel entrance (and lateral sides) attached to the structure overhang will be removed to form a more open space upon entering The Pushkinsky Jewel from the square. Both side (northwest and southeast) sections of the cinema’s cladding structure will be preserved using careful restoration process to bring them back to their former glory.
By night, due to the position of the cinema and because of the buildings around it, in order to be properly appreciated and avoid any reflection needs very localized lighting. The spirit is to create a system that would always and only allow the cinema to speak for itself. The only way to achieve this is integration. We advance by degrees. We envision a lighting system that transform into a kind of fluid which flows over Pushkinsky Cinema’s façade: a series of spotlights <locking the luminaires extremely precisely to adjust one another like the pleats of a Fortuny pleated fabric> that light up simultaneously or one section after another with different intensities to tell a story.
We imagined watching one of Pushkin’s poetries come to life – through the <clouds>, which symbolizes the sequences of scenes that are the plot of the legend. It is with light, we have interpreted Alexander Pushkin’s words and legacy – The Pushkinsky Jewel. The conclusion is an unexpected and iconic building concept that is the embodiment of culture and economy of Moscow.
Location: Pushkin Square, Moscow, Russia