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Tver Toys and Other Folk Art

The history of Tver folk art dates back to 1935 when the Art Products Artel (i.e., артель "Художественные изделия") gathered together many regional artisans. After a growth spurt in the 1950's-60's, it diversified into a sizable enterprise in 1975. Its new name became 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 new difficulties as well as neglect of its famus 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 has always been wood work crafts with decorative poker work, as well as interesting carving and painting with acrylic dyes. There is significant manual labor involved in producing its products, evident especially in the details, which, in turn, gives each item a uniqueness. To get to a finished product, a great many stages are needed. Wood is felled, then sawed into block and timber, trimmed, again sawed to size, profiled (carved), assembled and then burnt and painted. Most of the items here are vintage. (Note: some of the arts and crafts here are from other nearby arts and crafts centers.)

  • Buratino [Tver]

    Buratino [Tver]

    Buratino (Буратино). Scarce Tver folk art figure that depicts Buratino hiding behind the Golden Key. Playful Russian arts and crafts piece with enhancements that include wood burning and painting. 1980's. 5¾" x 4⅝" x 2½". Like new. 1 only...

    $35.00
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  • Playmates [Tver]

    Playmates [Tver]

    Playmates (Товарищи по играм). Scarce Tver toy depicting a little girl on a see-saw with her friend, Koshka. Playful Russian arts and crafts piece with enhancements that include wood burning and painting. 1980's. 4" x 6½" x 2". Like new. 1 only.

    $35.00
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  • Peasant with Clubs [Tver]

    Peasant with Clubs [Kalinin]

    Russian Peasant (Bauer) with Clubs (Русский крестьянин (Бауэр) с дубинками). Matryoshka-shaped figure and box of a stern peasant holding two different clubs while standing alongside a small barrel. Pieces are mounted on a wood base. Unusual Russian arts...

    $40.00
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  • Wooden Churches Play Set Deluxe

    Wooden Churches Play Set Deluxe

    Wooden Churches Play Set. A deluxe 6 piece play set consisting of several hand made wood churches. One Solovetsky Monastery Skete (Соловецкий Скит), one Korovnitsky Sobor (Коровницкий Собор), which is part of the Korovnitskaya Sloboda of Yaroslavl, one...

    $48.00
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  • Wooden Churches Play Set

    Wooden Churches Play Set

    Wooden Churches Play Set. 5 piece play set consisting of several hand made wood churches. One large Rizopolozhensky wall and gates to the monastery in Suzdal, one chapel (Деревянная часовня), a Wondrous (Дивная) church, a Holy Gates in Suzdal (Святые...

    $35.00
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  • SALE
    Bear Cubs on Tree Stump Box [Tver]

    Bear Cubs on Tree Stump Box [Tver]

    Bear Cubs Climbing a Tree Stump. Nicely made and unusual Russian arts and crafts piece with enhancements that include wood burning and painting. Top of the stump swings open to reveal a secret hiding place. Circa late 1980's. 8"x2⅞". Almost like new. 1...

    $35.00 $25.00
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  • Children in the Basket Tver Figure

    Children in the Basket Tver Figure

    Children in a Basket. A completely handmade old-fashioned Russian toy figure. Five freckle-faced kids with different hair color are squeezed into a basket. Might be loosely based on the children's story "Neznaika". Very unusual in our experience...

    $18.00
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  • Murzik Cat in the Basket

    Murzik Cat in the Basket

    Murzik (Мурзик). Cat in a Basket from Tver. A completely handmade old-fashioned Russian toy with bobblehead action. Paint, woodburning and a clear coat of lacquer. Made in Russia in the 1990's. A few left. 3¼".   

    $14.00
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  • Dubovichyok (Дубовичек) Oak Mushroom Elf

    Dubovichyok (Дубовичек) Oak Mushroom Elf

    Dubovichyok (Дубовичек) Oak Mushroom Elf. The Dubovik is part of Russian folk culture and is sometimes known as "Old Man Dubovichyok". He is based on the stocky mushroom of the same name. Details include acorns, a bird, eggs and a nest. Polychrome...

    $14.00
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  • Giant Head Box [Tver]

    Ruslan and Ludmila Giant Head Box

    The Giant Slumbering Head. The disembodied giant head belongs to the brother of the wizard "Chernomor" from the Tale of Ruslan and Ludmila. The sword which lies underneath the head is off to the side. Helmet removes to reveal a box. Made in Tver when it...

    $18.00
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  • Leschy Лещий) Goblin Bobblehead

    Leschy Лещий) Goblin Bobblehead

    Leschy (Лещий) Goblin Bobblehead. The Leshy (aka Leschi) is part of Russian folk culture and is a type of goblin or grandfatherly forest spirit and is a guardian of the woods. He can assume any likeness and change in size and height. Here he is...

    $14.00
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  • Bear with Basket Box

    Bear with Basket Box

    Bear with Basket (Медведь с корзиной). An unusual wood souvenir, probably Kalinin (though might be Semenov), and probably 1980's. Expressive face and simple wood-burning highlights. Big red "Made in USSR" label on the bottom. 5½" in height...

    $25.00
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  • Masha and the Bear Toy Figure

    Masha and the Bear Toy Figure

    Masha and The Bear (Маша и Медведь). Hand made toy from Tver circa 1989. Wood, paint, lacquer. 5"x 2½". Brand new condition. Limited quantity. An older couple had a grand daughter named Masha, who, one day with her friends, decided to go to...

    $14.00
    SOLD
  • SALE
    Snow White and 7 Dwarfs Play Set

    Snow White and 7 Dwarfs Play Set

     Snow White and 7 Dwarfs Play Set. The famous and well-known (thanks to Disney) fairy tale, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, was first related in 1812 when the Brothers Grimm gathered it together with other old European folk stories. It is believed...

    $29.00 $24.00
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  • SALE
    Fedoseyevo Village Troika "Splinter Toy"

    Fedoseyevo Troika Nizhni-Novgorod "Splinter Toy"

    Fedoseyevo Troika (Федосеевская Тройка -Нижний Новгород). A team of three horses with simple painted patterns and "furry" tails. Originating out of the Nizhny-Novgorod region, not far from the town of Semenov, these bright colored and lightweight movable...

    $40.00 $29.95
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