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Miniature Art from Palekh, Mstera and Fedoskino

Attractive and affordable, these Russian brooches make unique gifts for mothers, wives, nieces and grandmothers. Treat them to something special on Valentine's Day, Easter, a wedding and birthdays, as well as Mother's Day and Christmas. They'll certainly be the "belles of the ball"!

These brooches, buttons and pins are beautiful miniature oil and egg tempera paintings done by highly talented Russian artists. Several centuries ago, miniatures achieved great status in the art world. Russian masters learned special techniques from England, Italy, and other great art centers. Subject matter came from classical and folk tale painting and included portraiture of the 18th-19th centuries.

The production techniques include the several applications of paint, each fully dried, and then coated with a transparent lacquer. Each piece is finished off by polishing and buffing. In expert hands, colors are rich and the finished piece shimmers and glows. Painting is done on papier-mache, mother-of-pearl, or wood and can be inset into a handmade metal surround. Mother-of-pearl, both from fresh-water sources and the river, produces a dramatic quality. Gold, silver, bronze, and aluminum powders are frequently mixed with oils and tempera paints. Many times the clasp is a safety pin embedded into the papier-mache or an old-fashioned Victorian-styled pin back. Each piece serves multiple functions: first, as affordable and wearable art, second, it can be framed as a miniature, and third, as an heirloom to pass on from generation to generation. Each piece is may be signed by the artist and we add a gift box for an elegant presentation.

  • Autumn Landscape Lacquer Brooch

    Autumn Landscape Lacquer Brooch

    Fedoskino Autumn Landscape (Федоскино Пейзаж). Oil painting on papier-mache. Delicate scene of the changing of the season as the river floods into the forest in the fall. Multi-color sky. Sculpted papier-mache frame is dotted in silver. Maker's mark on...

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  • Ivan and the Magic Horse Lacquer Brooch

    Ivan and the Magic Horse Lacquer Brooch

    Конёк-Горбунок. The Little Humpbacked Horse, aka The Magic Pony. Egg tempera on a black background papier-mache brooch. Mid-1970's formal Mstera painting on papier-mache. Depicted is the scene where the peasant's son Ivanushka (the Fool) succeeds in...

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  • Princess with Crown (Принцесса с короной) lacquer brooch

    Princess with Crown Lacquer Brooch

    Princess with Crown (Принцесса с короной). Oil painting of a young noblewoman with a polychrome crown set on a white veil. She wears a translucent golden dress with a green color. Painted on river mother of pearl with a lacquer that has patinated...

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  • Troika Brooch (Fedoskino Mother of Pearl)

    Troika Brooch (Fedoskino Mother of Pearl)

    Winter Troika (Зимняя Тройка). Painting on mother of pearl set into heavy brass and a Victoria pin back. Etched into the backing (in Russian): "Fedoskino  Winter Troika" and the name of the artist. 2¼" x 1½". Overall very good...

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  • Young Woman with a Red and Gold Kokoshnik Lacquer Brooch

    Young Woman with a Red and Gold Kokoshnik Lacquer Brooch

    Young Woman with a Red and Gold Kokoshnik Lacquer Brooch (Русская девушка с красным и золотым кокошником). Oil painting on rectangular papier-mache of a young woman with a red and glimmering gold kokoshnik (a traditional Russian headdress worn...

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  • Boyarishnya With Braid. Brooch with miniature painting.

    Young Woman with Embroidered Red Kokoshnik

    Young Woman with Embroidered Red Kokoshnik Lacquer Brooch (Русская девушка с вышитым кокошником). Oil painting on papier-mache of a young woman with a gold embroidered red kokoshnik (a traditional Russian headdress worn primarily in the northern regions...

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