In his series ‘Guardians’, photographer Andy Freeberg portraits elder women, who sit in Russian art museums and guard the collections. When looking at the paintings and sculptures, the presence of the women becomes an inherent part of viewing the artwork itself. Freeberg found the guards as intriguing to observe as the pieces they watch over.

In conversation they told him how much they like being among Russia’s great art. A woman in Moscow’s State Tretyakov Gallery Museum even returns on her day off to sit in front of a painting that reminds her of her childhood home. Another guard travels three hours each day to work, since at home she would just sit on her porch and complain about her illnesses, ‘as old women do.’ Besides their stiff sitting posture and the motionless look there is a strange relation between the ladies and the works they watch over which adds a humorous touch to the series.

All images © Andy Freeberg | Via: i-ref

Michaelangelo's Moses and The Dying Slave, Pushkin Museum, 2008Matisse Still Life, Hermitage Museum, 2008Konchalovsky's portrait with family, State Tretyakov Gallery, 20Stroganov Palace, Russian State Museum, 2008Kugach's Before the Dance, State Tretyakov Gallery, 2009Malevich's Self Portrait, Russian State Museum, 2009Rublev and Daniil's The Deesis Tier, State Tretyakov Gallery 2002nd Century Mummy Masks, Pushkin Museum, 2009Nesterov's Blessed St Sergius of Radonezh, Russian State Museum,Veronese's Adoration of the Shepherds and Madonna and Child with
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