The Fox Tea Party (Лиса устроила чаепитие). This fully hand painted matryoshka is as "cute as a bug's ear"! Inspired by Soviet-era children's book illustrations, it is an original artist design and one-of-a-kind (never to be reproduced). It is not, by any stretch of the imagination, a standard tourist doll sold in the marketplaces in Russia, nor was in made in China (don't get us started, please). Each piece is fully painted, using all the available space, including the bottoms. Each is finished with several coats of crystal-clear lacquer. Designed and signed by the artist. 3 nest, 4¼" to 2¼". 1 only, as pictured.
The fox is generally a trickster in fairy tales and folk legends, but the Slavic tradition is to assign a more benign role to it, relying more on its cleverness, than its ability to con. Tales can be complex, such as Liza the Fox and Catafay the Cat, or simple as in the Fox and the Blackbird. In this case, two foxes sit down over a pot of tea. A little girl and her pet mouse also are present, while the cat runs off. A detailed and clever doll.