Sister Alyonushka Brother Ivanushka (Сестрица Алёнушка и Братец Иванушка). An unusual hand made and painted Sergiev Posad wood figure, circa 1998. Signed by the artist on the bottom of the piece. Excellent painting and wood carving. Nicely lacquered. 7" tall, 2" wide.
The folk tale Alyonushka tells about the sister who cares for her younger brother. One day, while extremely thirsty, he drinks from a cow's hoofprint filled with water, which transforms him into a goat. Ivanushka, in kid form, goes on to save Alyonushka from drowning after she is thrown into it by a wicked witch. This act delights Ivanushka, who joyfully turns head over heels thrice and changes back to his human form. The story can be found in several different variations.