- Title: RUSSIA: RUSSIAN CRAFTSMAN RECREATED TSARIST ERA PALACE SUITE
- Date: 13th June 2000
- Summary: MOSCOW, RUSSIA (JUNE 13, 2000) (REUTERS) 1. SLV VILLAGE STREET / TWO WOMEN SITTING ON BENCH (2 SHOTS) 0.13 2. EXT CRAFTSMAN VLADIMIR AKULO'S WOODEN HOUSE 0.17 3. SLV GOLD-COLOURED EMPIRE-STYLE FURNITURE INSIDE HOUSE 0.23 4. SLV GOLD-COLOURED HAND-MADE INLAID TABLE 0.27 5. SV VLADIMIR AKULOV LIGHTING LAMP UNDERNEATH ICON / ICON (3 SHOTS) 0.43 6. MV AKULOV SPEAKING ABOUT FURNITURE STANDING IN FRONT OF MIRROR 0.58 7. LV THREE STRAY DOGS LYING ON ROOF 1.01 8. SV AKULOV SHOWING PIECES OF WOOD HE USED TO MAKE FURNITURE 1.08 9. SV (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) AKULOV: "This is all the material in the world that I need to make the furniture." 1.16 10. MV DOORS OPEN, REVEALING BEDROOM WITH CARVED BEDFRAME / INLAID CLOSET (3 SH0TS) 1.32 11. SV (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) AKULOV "After I made this, all of the rest of the work went smoothly and easily. Well, no, I shouldn't say that, of course it wasn't easy, it was very difficult. The hardest thing was to work creatively, to invent things." 1.53 12. CU/SV AKULOV CUTTING WOOD IN HIS WORKSHOP / AKULOV'S HANDS (3 SHOTS) 2.18 13. SLV/MV AKULOV CARRYING WATER BUCKETS TO WELL/ AT WELL/ STANDING (3 SHOTS) 2.53 14. SV (SOUNDBITE) (Russian) AKULOV: "My dream is to, one day, receive an order to create a palace room, which would draw upon all my talents and all my imagination. What I do here is seen only here, and I wish that my work could be seen elsewhere, such as in a palace, or at somebody's home. I would really like for that to happen, and I would like to earn some money." 3.18 15. LV AKULOV CLIMBING STAIRCASE TO ATTIC 3.23 Initials Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
- Embargoed: 28th June 2000 13:00
- Location: KLIMOVO RUSSIA
- Country: Russia
- Reuters ID: LVAF476E60PIAQM3DNBHJK97HBWZ
- Story Text: A Russian craftsman has recreated a Tsarist-era palace
suite with his own hands, his own money and in his own village
Klimovo, 600 kilometres west of Moscow, is a
typical Russian village. Apple trees blossom, women exchange
news on roadside benches, and life moves slowly along.
But Klimovo has something that no other Russian village
does, an Imperial-era palace suite, just a stone's throw
away from the local farms and water well, in a small wooden
The gold-coloured walls, ceiling, furniture and tables are
fit for a Tsar. But it is actually the home of local
craftsman Vladimir Akulov.
Akulov fashioned the entire imperial splendour with his own
The seventy-year-old carpenter modelled his palace suite on
the Winter Palace, or Hermitage, in St. Petersburg and says
that it is his gift to his fellow villagers who cannot afford
the costly culture tour into Russia's historic and large
The craftsman financed the palace himself. He gathered
wild mushrooms and sold them to collective farms. He made
wooden barrels and sold them to villagers.
He says that all he needed was a few wood scraps which he
stores in his attic underneath three sleeping dogs.
Akulov's pride and joy is the master bedroom with its
Akulov says that the bedrame was the hardest part to
build, but that the rest of the project wasn't easy either.
"Of course, it wasn't easy, it was very difficult. The
hardest thing was to work creatively, to invent things."
And thinking up ideas was not his only problem.
Soviet authorities didn't approve of Akulov's project when
he began it in the early 1980s. They said his craftwork was
"parasitism" and sentenced him to four years in jail.
Akulov continued carving behind bars. But, this time, the
authorities couldn't object: he was whittling away portraits
of Lenin and other communist leaders.
Akulov left jail and returned to his village home. But he
also made trips to St. Petersburg's Hermitage palace where he
sketched palace rooms and drew more inspiration for his
Now, without Soviet authorities to ban his work, Akulov
hopes to receive a contract order for an even larger project.
"My dream is to, one day, receive an order to create a
palace room which would draw upon all my talents and all my
imagination. What I do here is seen only here, and I wish my
work could be seen elsewhere, such as in a palace, or at
somebody's home. I would really like for that to happen, and
I would like to earn some money."
But, for now, Akulov's work can be seen only in Klimovo --
far off the beaten track for most tsars and tsarinas, but well
worth the visit.
- Copyright Holder: REUTERS
- Copyright Notice: (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2015. Open For Restrictions - http://about.reuters.com/fulllegal.asp
- Usage Terms/Restrictions: None