On 12 May 2022, the Moscow Kremlin Museums have launched The Duel: from Trial by Combat to Noble Crime exhibition, introducing the European history of duelling through the original historical sources and artefacts of the 16th-17th centuries, many of which have never been previously shown in Moscow.
The vernissage was attended by the Director-General of the Moscow Kremlin Museums E.Yu. Gagarina, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Moscow Kremlin Museums and Special Presidential Representative for Environmental Protection, Ecology and Transport S.B. Ivanov, Special Representative of the President of the Russian Federation for International Cultural Cooperation M.E. Shvydkoy, and Communications Director of the Charitable Foundation ‘Art, Science and Sport’ established by Alisher Usmanov – N.A. Trotsky.
"This exhibition was supposed to open one and half months earlier, but our European partners withdrew their loans of artworks two days before the opening. However, our colleagues, our good friends, decided to come to our rescue: during a short period, the curators of eight museums, libraries and archives together with our curators have found similar exhibits. Not even two months later, we unveil this project, which is almost identical to the one we wanted to show at the beginning of March," commented Elena Gagarina, Director General of the Moscow Kremlin Museums.
Sergei Ivanov, Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Museums, noted the significance of the declared subject of the show, "Thanks to our classical literature and historical chronicles, we can imagine handgun duels as part of our history, but we can hardly imagine what happened in the Middle Ages, what kind of armour and weapons the duelists had."
Special Representative of the President of the Russian Federation for International Cultural Cooperation, Mikhail Shvydkoy, also appealed to the public, "This display demonstrates that there is so much we can do on our own and can present such a complicated theme, related to various European countries, with the help of art pieces from Russian museums. I am sure that the project will attract attention of many people."
Communications Director of the Charitable Foundation ‘Art, Science and Sport’ Nikolay Trotsky greeted the guests and addressed words of respect and gratitude on behalf of the founder Alisher Usmanov. "I congratulate you for overcoming the barriers that happened very unexpectedly. Congratulations on the unity and consolidation of our museums, libraries and other institutions – this is very important for us now," said Trotsky and added that the exhibition is extraordinary and is sure to catch attention.
The Duel: from Trial by Combat to Noble Crime exhibition is on till 14 August 2022.