Byzantine Russian Orthodox Icons (Русские православные иконы). This doll was painted in Russia in 1993, when the doors and windows of glasnost and perestroika began to open, though long before commercial languor began setting in. All of the paintings are done by hand. The faces are traditional as is each icon. The first doll has each angel of The Holy Trinity painted on it (as shown in one of the pictures showing all sides). The artist's signature at the bottom of the painting of the first doll, plus Moscow and date. 9 nest, 8" down to tiny (¾"). 1 only. Very good condition (some minor signs of wear, no cracks).
The head doll is a painting depicting three winged angels who have appeared to Abraham. The angels are seated and gesture towards the chalice in the center of the table. The second doll has an image of the Feodorovskaya Mother of God (Russian: Феодоровская икона Божией Матери), also known as Our Lady of Saint Theodore. It is the patron icon of the Romanov family and one of the most venerated icons in the Upper Volga region. This is followed by a painting of St. John the Baptist and a painting of the Face of Christ. A succession of icons of the Theotokos follow. First, the Softener of Evil Hearts, also known as The Seven Swords Icon and The Prophecy of Simon. The Seven Swords symbolize the Seven Sorrows of Mary. Next is the Virgin of the Sign, or "Znamenie". It depicts the Theotokos during the Annunciation, while the image of the Christ Child represents Him at the moment of His conception in the womb of the Virgin. The last three images are intriguing. The artist has painted Great Martyr Barbara (3rd century saint), St. Olga (10th century saint who spread Christianity throughout early Russia) and St. Anna, the Mother of the Mother of God. A feature of all the dolls, with the exception of the first, is the titling of each saint or image in Church Slavonic, on the backs.