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This Book Takes You ‘Beyond Fabergé’ in Russian Jewelry History
The authors dive into the lesser known jewelers that created the masterpieces of Imperial Russia.
New York—When one thinks of Russian royal jewelry, it probably evokes the thought of the most well-known house, Fabergé.
But in Imperial Russia, when the empire’s jewelers were reaching their pinnacle in craftsmanship to outfit the Romanovs, the most important players to the tsars and tsarinas of the time weren’t, in fact, Carl Fabergé.
A new book aims to bring to light those goldsmiths and jewelers who brough to life the gem- and diamond-studded tiaras, necklaces, and other baubles from the early 1700s to the Russian Revolution in the early 1900s.
In it, authors Marie Betteley—a jewelry dealer, gemologist, lecturer, and leading authority on Russian jewels and decorative arts—and David Schimmelpenninck van der Oye, professor of Russian history at Brock University in Ontario and a fellow of the Russian Society of Canada, put the spotlight on relatively unknown names such as Pauzié, Bolin, Hahn, Koechli, Seftigen, Marshak, Morozov, Nicholls & Plincke, Grachev, Sazikov, and more.
They also do explore, of course, the house of Fabergé but put the jeweler into the perspective of that time.
Later, the authors offer a look at the market for all these historic masterworks, from their beginnings to the demand in today’s auction and collector worlds.
The book features more than 600 photographs to help acquaint the readers with the artisans and their jewels.
“I loved every aspect of writing this book, but the most thrilling were archival discoveries and delving into the personal stories and creations of Russian jewelers during the Imperial Era which spanned over 300 years,” Betteley says in the introduction.
“Until now, almost everything we know on this topic is tied to one name, Carl Fabergé. Long proclaimed Jeweler to the Tsars, Fabergé formed only part of an intricate network of the empire’s finest jewelers, but today the names of the others are virtually unknown. ‘Beyond Fabergé: Imperial Russian Jewelry’ introduces the world to these masters and their creations, putting Fabergé in perspective by casting the firm as a shining star, rather than the sun in a constellation of master jewelers.”
The book will be released on Dec. 8 and can be purchased through Rizzoli, Amazon, and more.
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