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Desk Set

St Petersburg

1820s

Candlesticks

First third of the 19th century

Throughout the 19th century, numerous local and foreign workshops opened in St. Petersburg. Those workshops produced and traded articles made from malachite; the most popular were those of Galiotti, Rogers, Triscorni, Tigelstein, and Demidov.

This desk set was kept in the private rooms of Nicholas I in the Winter Palace. It is a splendid example of Russian mosaic. The base of an object was made of one material and then faced with thin plaques of malachite. The edges were adjusted and patterns selected so that the entire object looked as if it were made from a single piece of malachite. Delicately chased details of gilded bronze are remarkably combined with the dark green malachite background.

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