Restoration of VDNKh’s oleaginous plant fountain

Restoration of VDNKh’s oleaginous plant fountain
The badly damaged fountain hadn’t been in working order for 60 years.

A fountain in the form of a bunch of oleaginous plants design by the architect Valery Taushkanov in the early 1950s is being restored at VDNKh together with Pavilion No. 30, Microbiological Industry. The architectural ensemble will eventually appear like it once did many year ago.

The ceramic fountain mirrors the decor of the main façade and is the focal point of the area in front of the pavilion. The upper bowl represents a large sunflower. The bottoms of the lower and middle bowls are surrounded by ceramic flowers and berries.

“The fountain was almost in ruins as it hadn’t been in use for about 60 years. It did not have a single whole part, neither ceramic tiles, nor concrete bottom and the upper bowl in the form of sunflower was no longer there. The remaining ceramic tiles were severely damaged with chips and multiple small cracks,” the press service of the Department for Major Housing Repairs reported. 

The restorers had to cast almost all the ceramic parts of the fountain from scratch based on the remaining fragments and archival material. The upper bowl will be made out of ceramic material, and the central part will be covered with tiles depicting leaves and flowers. The fountain when finished will be 3.38 metres tall and the diameter of the lower bowl will be  4.21, the middle bowl 2.63 and the upper bowl 1.4 metres.

“We have already installed  new engineering works  for the fountain and we have also cast the lower and the middle bowls as well as built the concrete bottom with all the necessary steel water pipes. The fountain has 17 nozzles: eight lower nozzles and one in the middle  will be decorated with ears of wheat. Specialists are covering the concrete bottom using the terrazzo technique typical of many VDNKh fountains. They have already started tiling the fountain,” specified the press service.

All the work on the fountain and pavilion are expected to be completed in the third quarter of the year.

The landscaping and development of VDNKh was launched in 2014. Pavilions and fountains are starting to look like they did once upon a time. The country’s main exhibition centre has 49 cultural heritage sites.