Abandoned The Famous Church Znamenskaya in Teploye Estate Russia

This location in Moskovskaya oblast was formerly a vast estate, the family nest of the Soymonov nobility. Pyotr Alexandrovitch Soymonov founded the estate in the 18th century. The estate’s main structures, including the Znamenskaya church, were erected by N.A.Soymonov in 1797.

The sole extant structure from Teploye’s estate is the Znamenskaya church. Denis Frantsouzov took the photos.

The church is progressively falling into decay. The estate was destroyed in 1941, and the community was demolished. Regrettably, no one is interested in restoring one of Russia’s most important 18th-century architectural treasures.

On September 18, 2021, a press tour of the Yaroslavl region was held to address the issue of cultural heritage preservation. It was organized by the White Iris Charity Foundation, which works to save rural churches by performing emergency and conservation work and developing programs for the rebuilding of devastated churches.

The press trip stopped at the settlements of Vasilievskoye, Kurba, Degtevo, and Novoye. The press trip was part of the Rural Treasures Revival initiative, which was funded by the Presidential Grant Foundation with a grant from the Russian Federation’s President. Each village’s major treasure is a church. Now, these architectural relics, which have long been abused, are in desperate need of conservation and care.

The Village of Kurba

Kurba is notable for its legendary Cathedral of the Kazan Icon of the Mother of God, which was erected in the Naryshkin Baroque style in 1770. [From the late seventeenth through the early eighteenth centuries, the Naryshkin (or Muscovite) Baroque style was popular in Moscow and the surrounding districts of Russia. It was distinguished by elegance, meticulous decorating, and even secular features in its usually multi-domed churches. It was named after Moscow’s powerful Naryshkin boyar family, on whose estate the first such chapel was erected.

The domes of the Church of the Kazan Icon

This great monument of Russian architecture’s architectural features—the sixteen-petal design and volumetric composition—cannot be found anywhere else in the world. The church walls are covered in paintings depicting around 350 biblical episodes. Surprisingly, the Church of the Kazan Icon has appeared in three Russian films, the most recent of which being the “Monastery” series in 2020. The White Iris Foundation performed conservation work on the church, saving it from utter destruction. A repair plan for the Kurba masterpiece is in the works.

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