Abramtsevo

This suburban estate of industrialist Savva Mamontov has played a very important role in Russian culture. The estate on the bank of River Vorya fell into Mamontov's hands in 1870. Before that, the estate was owned by writer and public figure Sergey Aksakov, who loved to host guests, which included men of letters Nikolai Gogol, Fyodor Tyutchev, Ivan Turgenev, and many other well-known figures. Mamontov had bought the estate from the writer's daughter, and began an active transformation of the land. After organizing their own life, Mamontov and his wife began to rebuild the lives of nearby peasants, and established a hospital and a school next to the estate. Mamontov was a patron and a friend of many Russian artists and architects.

Prominent Russian artists Ilya Repin, Vasily Polenov, Valentin Serov, Konstantin Korovin, and Mikhail Vrubel began to regularly visit Abramtsevo and stay here as guests. Elizaveta Mamontova had opened a woodworking and ceramic studios for the guests. The artists took active part in the development of the estate park. Architect Pavel Samarin, using the sketches by Polenov and Viktor Vasnetsov, had built the famous Church of the Holy Mandylion, and Vasnetsov also designed the wooden "Hut on Stilts" – both of these buildings are the essential examples of Russian Art Nouveau. Ceramic tiles produced in the studio under Vrubel's management can be found throughout the estate, and Vrubel's majolica was used to decorate the famous bench that was built by the artist on the riverbank.

The estate's creative life, which had played an essential role in shaping the "neo-Russian style," had continued until the revolution of 1917, when it was nationalized and turned into the museum.