Stasov, Vasilii

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Stasov, Vasilii Petrovich


Born July 24 (Aug. 4), 1769, in Moscow; died Aug. 24 (Sept. 5), 1848, in St. Petersburg. Russian neoclassical architect.

From 1783 to 1794, Stasov was an apprentice architect at the Moscow Department of Public Works. By the late 1790’s he was working independently. From 1802 to 1808, Stasov studied architecture in France and Italy. Beginning in 1808 he worked in St. Petersburg, and in 1811 he became an academician of the St. Petersburg Academy of Arts. In 1816 he became a leading member of the Committee for Construction and Hydraulic Works in St. Petersburg, and in 1817 he was appointed construction supervisor at the imperial court. Between 1810 and 1820, Stasov designed more than 100 standard dwellings, decorative fencing, and commercial structures in the province.

Stasov’s major structures built in St. Petersburg between 1810 and the early 1820’s include the Pavlovskii regimental barracks (1817–20; now called Lenenergo)—an imposing edifice in the Field of Mars (seeFIELD OF MARS). Other works in St. Petersburg by Stasov are the Equestrian Department (1817–23; now a garage) and the Coachman’s Market (1817–19). Important works in Tsarskoe Selo (Pushkin) include the cast-iron gates To My Beloved Colleagues (1817–21), the Manege (1819–21), the Grand Greenhouse (1820–30), and the Stables (1823). Stasov’s major work in Moscow in the early 1820’s was the Provisions Warehouse (1821; completed 1835).

In the late 1820’s and early 1830’s, Stasov built two large cathedrals in St. Petersburg— Preobrazhenskii Cathedral (1827–29) and Troitskii Cathedral (1828–35; with sculptural decoration by S. I. Gal’berg). In 1833 he completed the Narva Gates (bronze chariot by P. K. Klodt and S. S. Pimenov; sculptural decoration by M. G. Krylov, N. A. Tokarev, and others). From 1834 to 1838, Stasov worked on the cast-iron Moscow Gates (sculptural decoration by B. I. Orlovskii)—a magnificent symbol of Russia’s victory over Napoleon. Between 1832 and 1835 he completed the cathedral of the Smol’nyi Convent, as well as the western buildings containing the cells. The interiors of the monastery structures are classicistic. After the fire of 1837, Stasov restored the facades, main hall, and churches of the Winter Palace (1838–39).

While developing the principal ideas and compositional devices of the last stage of Russian neoclassicism (the Empire style), Stasov frequently turned to the stark forms of the Doric order to achieve triumphant architectural form. Many of his works reflect the national spirit of triumph after Russia’s victory in the War for the Fatherland of 1812, as well as the themes of national strength and military heroism and gallantry.


Arkhitektor V. P. Stasov: Materialy k izucheniiu tvorchestva. [Editor in chief A. V. Shchusev.] Moscow, 1950.
Piliavskii, V. I. Stasov-arkhitektor. Leningrad [1963].
Piliavskii, V. I. Zodchii V. P. Stasov: 1769–1848. [Leningrad, 1970.]
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.