2. “Art Courtyard” (Dvor Isskustv)


6 Zhukovskogo Street once housed Gleb Uspensky, a writer famous for shedding light on Russian peasant life and influencing Tolstoy. Now the building is known for a different writer. Its courtyard, named “Art Courtyard,” features murals of scenes from Alexander Pushkin’s 1820 epic poem Ruslan and Lyudmila. Ruslan, a knight, goes on a quest to rescue Lyudmila, the daughter of Prince Vladimir (a real Russian ruler from the 10th-11th century), who has been abducted by a wizard.

In the courtyard’s main mural, Ruslan confronts a giant human head that blocks his path.

Then Ruslan and the Wizard face off. The Wizard takes flight, but Ruslan catches hold of his beard. They fly and fight for three days until the Wizard surrenders.