June 2018


«Architecton: proceedings of higher education» № 33 March 2011

History of architecture

Lipina Tatiana N.

post-graduate student
Research supervisor: Associate Prof. N.I.Bugayeva, C.Sc. (Art Studies),
Ural State Academy of Architecture and Arts Ekaterinburg, Russia


During the period of mass colonisation of the Ural Mountains in the 17th century with extensive development of prime quality lands, areas around small rivers and minor tributaries were the first to be developed. The state borders were secured by constructing strong points, including ostrogs (stockaded towns), slobodas (large villages), and fortresses. Thus, in 1861, Kamyshevskaya Sloboda arose on the left bank of the river Isset. It was enclosed with a defence wall and had a wooden church in the centre.

No information has been found concerning the time of construction of the St. George Cathedral in stone. It is known that the cathedral was consecrated on 26 November 1831. Cult buildings were constructed on the basis of standard rules, with the invariable three-part composition of the volumes placed on one axis: temple, refectory, bell tower. The cathedral located in the centre of the village consolidated the composition of the site, the low-rise housing developments serving as a frame to the cult building. The square with the cathedral became the settlement’s centre, "attracting" all the principal streets towards itself. On week-ends, people from all around the settlement and its neighbourhoods would travel to this market square, which turned into a setting for a most boisterous, brisk and lively performance. Kamyshevo’s resulting character mirrors all of these different aspects of its development: social, trading, cultural, and spiritual.

In the second half of the 19th century, the stratification of peasants in Russia manifested itself in the architecture of settlements as variation in building types. Merchants built their houses in the best streets of the settlement realizing both their own and alien tastes and becoming bearers of social and cultural "progress" in rural life. A typical example of such local building type is the richly decorated merchant house on Uralskaya Street. The unsophisticated architecture of the merchant stores had references to the decor of the St. George Cathedral.

In the 1830-1840s, Nicholas I initiated a radical turn in cult architecture. The Emperor encouraged the construction of churches in the Old Russian style. As a result, a new porch, a bell tower and side-altars were added to St George Cathedral, which created the impression of it being sprawled and chained to the earth. The erection of a stone fence around the cathedral became an important element of the ensemble and generated additional artistic effects. The church thus became the main religious centre of the settlement but also a symbol of statesmanship, asserting the ideas of unity and integrity of the multinational Russian empire. The industrial revolution in the second half of the 19th century promoted the construction of a complex of industrial buildings (cloth weaving mill) owned by A.M.Ushkov in the village of Kamyshevo. The church on the opposite bank stood for active perception in conjunction with the mill, resulting in a more complex and enlarged structure of the settlement.

The public buildings, all rendered equally powerfully in terms of volume and elevation and scattered around the St. George cathedral towering on a hill, attached special picturesqueness to it. Thus, a small group of administrative buildings, creating architectonic "spots" and skilfully arranged on the main street, gave to the centre a business-like and official look. The distinctive, unique architectural planning structure of the village Kamyshevo has a cathedral as its main building, which will be maintaining its dominant role, producing a considerable impact on its cultural development.

Key words: cult architecture, Kamyshevskaya Sloboda, Russian villages, baroque, classicism, eclecticism, provincial culture

Russian text of this article

ISSN 1990-4126  Registration MCM el. № ФС 77-70832 of 30.08.2017 © USUAA, 2004-2017  © Architecton, 2004-2017