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Great Faberge in the Hermitage
October 7 , 1999 - October 22, 2000

The exhibition "Great Faberge in the Hermitage" was organized by the State Hermitage in cooperation with the Faberge Arts Foundation (Washington,DC-St.Petersburg) with the participation of The Peterhof State Museum Reserve, The Tsarskoe Selo State Museum Reserve, The Pavlovsk State Museum Reserve, The Yelagin Palace Museum. Several objects are on loan from the collection of Mr. John A.Traina Jr. of San Francisco, A La Vieille Russie (New York), the FORBES Magazine Collection (New York). This exhibition that includes more than 100 pieces of art represents the work of the renown master in all its variety. It gives as well an opportunity to see some pieces by the famous artists of the firm such as M. Perkhin, G. Vigstrem, U. Rappoport, F.Rukert, V. Reimer and the others. New exhibits also include 14 objects made by Faberge's contemporaries, mainly St.Petersburg artists such as K.Bolin, I. Britsin, P. Ovchinnikov, A. Tillander. The work of Carl Faberge was undoubtedly of great significance for the development of the art of jewelry but he was not the only one who gave to St.Petersburg its image of the major gold and silversmith art center. Some remarkable objects among which are the silver figure of a fox by the Faberge firm, the vase by Bolin, the scoop made in the Ovchinnikov workshop have originated from St.Petersburg and Moscow private collections. Ten cigarette cases representing a wide range of styles from Neoclassical and Rococo to style moderne have been lent by courtesy of John A. Traina Jr. Many of the cases are decorated in elegant simplicity, using the transparent colored enameling that was the special achievement of the Faberge workshops. Some of them have dated inscription. Quite rare is the silver war souvenir case with the inscription, "Carol. Petrograd Year 4 of the War 1917". This wartime economy case was given by King Carol of Romania to Countess Shakhanovskaya. These cigarette cases were all superbly made, with silent and invisible hinges and smooth-opening clasps. The ladies' gold compact in the form of a cigarette case is decorated in Art Nouveau style, and has been lent by A La Vieille Russie. The exquisite yellow enameled picture frame on loan from the FORBES Magazine Collection* contains a superb photograph of Grand Duchess Elizaveta Fiodorovna, sister of the Empress Alexandra Fiodorovna and wife of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich, uncle of Nicholas II. Another object- the silver cigarette case covered with pale blue transparent enamel and decorated with a diamond-set Imperial eagle was made in the Faberge workshop of August Hollming between 1908 and 1917. The third object on loan from the FORBES collection is the miniature samovar- in fact a lighter- made in the workshop of Anders Nevalainen.

J. Rappoport
Larger view

M. Perkhin
Larger view

Grand duchess
Ella frame

Victor Aarne
Larger view

The Hermitage
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