Kungur State College of Design and Applied Arts is a unique school located in on the bank of the Kama River near the Ural Mountains. The students from all over Russia and other countries are attracted to the small Ural Town of Kungur by the opportunity to gain carefully maintained old artistic skills. They train a lot of unique specialists there: wood and stone carvers, ceramists, metal and enamel artists, textile and carpet designers. The college is especially proud of their art of stone carving.
The best term and diploma students’ works as well as the ones of their teachers have been carefully collected at the college for its whole eighty year old history. Those works are kept in the Art Sample Room. Thanks to this collection the college has become a training center for secondary school and art studios teachers not only in the City of Kungur, but in the whole Perm Region.
Ten years ago it became clear that the growing collection of the college should not be hidden from the public. In 2006 the college opened a permanent publicly available exhibition "Music in the Stone". This exhibition presents both up-to-date and old stone carving craft beginning from the 1920s of the XX century. The earliest pieces date back to the beginning of the last century when the deposits of ornamental stones were discovered on the Iren River. Yet most of the pieces at that time had more practical than artistic feature (buttons, belt buckles, photo frames, and inkwells). The very first stone carvers neither paid much attention to the texture of the material nor perfected in their technique. That is why for a modern eye the early pieces have more historical than aesthetic value.
When the Kungur Stone Carving School was open in 1936, the new artists arrived and the approach to stone processing changed. The graduates of the school started to use new techniques of Florentine mosaic and inlay. As the years passed the stone pieces began to display their texture, decorative qualities, and artistic merits.
The collection pieces are the best samples of a specific Kungur style that has developed over the years of the Stone Carving School operation. Many of them have been successfully displayed at various home and international exhibitions.
The Museum of the College is an inspiration and a guardian of the precious traditions for the new generations of students. The museum exposition is annually replenished with new exhibits of great interest to visitors.