MOSCOW, November 4. /TASS/. Monument to St Vladimir Duke of Kiev, who brought Eastern Orthodox Christianity to Kievan Rus in 988, will be unveiled in Moscow on Friday as Russia marks People’s Unity Day.
Moscow City authorities put up the monument on Borovitskaya Square in front of the Kremlin’s southwester Borovistkaya Tower at the initiative of the Russian Military-Historical Soviety.
Russian President Vladimir Putin, Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Kirill I, the speaker of the upper house of Russian parliament, Valentina Matviyenko, and Culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky, who is president of the Russian Military-Historical Society, are expected to take part in the ceremony.
"St Duke Vladimir determined the vector of our nation’s development for many centuries ahead, if you look at it from today’s positions," Vladislav Kononov, the executive director of the military-historical society told TASS. "From our perspective, Duke Vladimir’s personality links the medieval Kievan Rus to modernity and his choice in favor of Orthodox Christianity made us exactly the people we are today."
The design of the monument was selected through a restricted tendering procedure. The organizers eventually commissioned it to the sculptor Salavat Shcherbakov, the author of more than 40 monumental compositions including the monuments to Russia’s prerevolutionary reformist Prime Minister Pyotr Stolypin and Patriarch Hermogenes, both in Moscow
"As regards the visual solution, this was a search for the image, for the essence of a historical epoch, including our days," Salavat Shcherbakov told TASS. "While working out the image, we took up all the historical sources available to us."
Particularly helpful in this sense was the exhibition ‘The Baptizer of Rus’ at the National History Museum. "We studied it minutely and cooperated closely with the museum staff."
"The exhibition displayed, for instance, the Duke’s lifetime images on coins, as well as clothes, helmets, weaponry, and horse harnessing of that time," Shcherbakov said. "And of course (we addressed) the 19th century sculpture and Viktor Vasnetsov’s painting in the St Vladimir Cathedral in Kiev.".