Yury Velten (Georg Friedrich Veldten)
A Russian architect of German origin, Yury Velten (1730–1801) was trained by the great Bartolomeo Rastrelli, a master architect of the Late Baroque style. But in Velten’s time Baroque was giving place to Classicism, whose emerging signs can be discerned in Velten’s creations. Construction of the Zubov Wing of the Catherine Palace according to Velten’s design began in 1778. There is a draft of that design attributed to Velten, with redlines by Catherine II. Some of his works were influenced by the triumphal victories of the Russian navy over the Turkish forces in 1768-1774. Velten’s romantic tribute to those events was his Tower Ruin in the Catherine Park. He also designed the Gothic Gate and several buildings in an exotic “Chinese-like” style, such as the Chinese Creaking Summer-House.