HOW great is Soviet Russia's storehouse of modern art, still largely hidden away in the storerooms of Leningrad's Hermitage Museum? Answer last week from a man with firsthand knowledge: "The Hermitage has the greatest collection of Picassos before 1914, and the greatest collection of Matisses anywhere. Its Gauguin collection is by far the greatest in the world. In Cézannes, it is second among institutional collections only to the Barnes collection in Merion, Pa. And it has three first-rate Rousseaus. The Van Goghs are excellent. From the period of say 1885 to 1914, its...

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