The Gallery, a new section of the Pushkin State Museum of Fine Arts, opened its doors to the public in August 2006. The setting up of the Gallery was the next step in the development of the Museum, following the opening of a new building for the Museum of Private Collections in 2005 and the Museion Centre of Aesthetic Training for children and young people in 2006.

The Gallery's twenty-six rooms contain a collection of works by masters of the 19th and 20th centuries. Whole rooms are devoted to a single movement in European art or the work of a single artist. There is a special room for the early 19th-century German school of painting represented by the works of Caspar David Friedrich and the Nazarenes. Smaller rooms enable visitors to take a new look at the well-known pictures of Eugene Delacroix and Jean-Dominique Ingres. The Spanish school is represented by Francisco de Goya. There is a special room for the Paris Salon painters Jean-Leon Gerome, Paul Delaroche and Eugene Louis Isabey. The works of the French landscape painters Camille Corot and members of the Barbizon School Theodore Rousseau, Jules Duprd, Diaz de la Pena and Charles Daubigny seem to have been specially intended for the Gallery's interiors. Canvases by Gustave Courbet, Jean-Franqois Millet and Honore Daumier complete the panorama of French realist art.

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