As a supporter of the availability of their products, Faberge created a huge number of objects of decorative and applied art.
The museum collection contains amazing things that reflect the life, customs, fashion and passions of the era. Among them are custom-made for specific individuals, and simply intended for sale in the stores of the renowned company.
For example, Baron Leopold Rothschild ordered objects in the corporate style of “color racing,” which Faberge designed for him. Blue-yellow stripes, as the guide Irina Klimovitskaya says, decorated the jockey inventory of Leopold's stable at the royal races. The same combination is traced in the arms of the Rothschilds. Desktop devices, watches, cigarette cases, business card holders of the most delicate work, Baron often gave to guests at the races.
Presented and elegant cigarette cases and snuff boxes made for the Ministry of the Imperial Court.
Faberge supplied the products for the Cabinet of His Imperial Majesty, who was in charge of all the property of the emperor and, in particular, the fund of royal gifts. “We have an amazing collection of golden Russian tray boxes. No one has yet declared the existence of such a collection in museums. The boxes were ordered by the imperial court, where it was decided to give, to bring them to guests.
They were decorated with images of members of the royal family and were made mainly in the main jewelry workshop. This work was supervised first by Perkhin, then by Vigström, ”tells Vladimir Voronchenko about unusual museum exhibits.
Interesting and samples of mass production, gift items.
The series "Folk types", "Flowers", "Menagerie" were released. Among them are a unique figure of a dancing peasant from various stones (in the state museums of the Russian Federation there are only six such poly-stone blocked sculptures) and rare “Pansies” in a vase made of rock crystal, as if filled with water. “I love Faberge’s stone-carving figures very much, and one should admire its enamels. And how amazing is the collection of buckles! ”, Says Vladimir Voronchenko.
Masters tried to combine the beauty of things with their functionality.
For example, a miniature cure is intended for sand, to sprinkle letters, to dry ink. The jade apple is a vessel with water, and its cutting is a brush for moistening stamps or envelopes when gluing. Jewelers could not resist the possibility of a little joke. If, for example, to lift the lid of the bonbonniere armchair, then a toilet seat will appear under it. In a couple to him existed and the armchair bidet.
Lighters, cigarette cases, pillboxes, matchboxes, calendars, thermometers and travel bags are all represented in the products of the Faberge house. “Pay attention to the thermometer in the case. This is a piece of jewelry. And during the war, the company began to make syringes with three types of needles for different injections, and all this was packaged in a box with a sign of the supplier of the imperial court. Things were not cheap.
Wall thermometers from Faberge, for example, cost 40-60 rubles, while ordinary ones cost a ruble or two, ”says the museum expert.
It cannot be said that each item was a masterpiece, especially considering the mass production and work to order. “We are buying not only the things of the imperial family, which are now very few. Creating a museum collection, we tried to show the diversity of the great jeweler's work, the whole range of topics that he developed. And, of course, we were primarily interested in quality. Some things have to be brushed aside because they are overly pompous and tasteless, despite the fact that they are expensive. This is not at all surprising, because Faberge worked to order, and each client has his own taste, which is not always perfect. Many persistently demanded the execution of their plans.
We try not to buy such works, ”Vladimir Voronchenko explains the principle of selecting items for the collection.
And laughter and miracle
There is in the museum and evidence of funny stories. The stone snail, for example, was made a competitor of Faberge in terms of stone-carving figures Denisov-Uralsky.
Wishing to emphasize his origin, the master added the “de” particle to the name of the famous mountains in the French manner, and as a result the inscription “Duralsky” appeared on the box. “It's a shame, it was a very good master. His last name was simply Denisov. He was friends with the writer Mamin, who took the pseudonym Sibiryak, and advised him to take the pseudonym Ural. That's what it has become. Denisov was a handicraftsman, but he made his way into people and started his own shop on Bolshaya Morskoy 27, near Faberge, ”says Irina. By the way, for Faberge stone-cutting work was done by the Urals people. At first he only ordered from them, and then he invited the best to himself and opened a workshop on the English Embankment.
In the exhibits presented in the museum, you can trace the whole range of "jewelry techniques" of that era. Despite the fact that the technique of enamel-guilloche invented by the French in the 18th century, Faberge brought it to perfection.
Several cigarette cases from the collection surprise with an unusual design.
They are made in the technique of kafarsnye (special treatment, giving the metal roughness, dullness and graininess). Such products are knocked out of the total number and look unusually modern. But the height of the combination of non-standard solutions and innovative jewelry technology is Alma Peel's bracelet from the Winter Patterns series, made for the Nobel family. “Faberge proclaimed the principle of primacy of craftsmanship and fantasy over the cost of precious materials, and Alma realized this principle best of all. Her things are simply woven of light. These are rhinestone, platinum and the smallest diamonds, which are each fixed in its platinum caste. Faberge first proposed to mount diamonds in platinum, because silver turns black. All snowflakes are different, do not repeat. In the same style, an egg for the emperor was made from the same materials, ”explains Irina Klimovitskaya.