The Russian Shop
1720 Ogden Avenue
Lisle, IL 60532
United States of America
The history of Tver folk art dates back to 1935 when, as the Art Products artel (артель "Художественные изделия"), gathered together many regional artisans. After a period of growth spurt in the 1950's-60's, by 1975 it had diversified and was a sizable enterprise. Its new name was The Kalinin Association of Art Crafts and Toys (Калининское производственное объединение художественных изделий и игрушек). The turbulent 1990's saw the company privatized, which created many new difficulties as well as some neglect of its wood crafts. Today, the company is one of the founders of the association "Folk arts and crafts of the Tver region", and is also part of the "Folk arts and crafts of Russia."
The main production of the company was wood work crafts with poker work, carving and painting with acrylic dyes. There is a lot of manual labor in products, especially in the details, which gives each item its uniqueness. To get to a finished product, a great many stages are involved. Wood is felled, sawed into block and timber, trimmed, sawed to size, profiled (carved), assembled and then burnt and painted. Many items here are vintage items. (Note: some of the arts and crafts here are other nearby arts and crafts centers.)
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