30 November 2016
MAKER’S MARK OF FEODOR RÜCKERT, MOSCOW, 1908–1917, 88 STANDARD, SCRATCHED INVENTORY NUMBER 2124
9.7 by 6.6 cm
Provenance: Private collection, Germany.
Rectangular, painted in polychrome enamels with foliate scrolls, flower heads and geometric décor on cream and ochre grounds, the sides with matching ornaments against cobalt blue, the lid painted en plein with a reproduction of the Bogatyrs by V. Vasnetsov within the matching polychrome enamelled frame.
The early 20th century was marked by a flourishing of interest in Old Russia and the subsequent revival of traditional folklore and craftsmanship. Not only did this revival inspire the introduction of enriched colour palettes and novel forms, but it also boosted the production of fashionable and exquisite gifts by Moscow craftsmen.
Feodor Rückert was among the most prominent silversmiths of the time, supplying works to the stores of Ovchinnikov, Marshak, Kurliukov and, most importantly, to Fabergé. Rückert’s work is particularly renowned for his sophisticated use of colour and variety of enamel technqiues, especially his miniature enamel paintings. His name became truly symbolic of the epoch’s decorative arts.
The en plein reproduction of The Bogatyrs by Viktor Vasnetsov depicts one of the nation’s favourite folk stories, reflecting on the fashion of the times. The warm and delicate matte finish, which was achieved by working the surface after firing, creates a beautiful contrast to the bright, decorative and glossy elements of the cloisonné enamel. The slightly more sombre colour palette of dark blues, greens and browns, rich ornamental patterns with, tendrils, beads and exquisite wirework make this piece an outstanding example from the height of Rückert’s craftsmanship.
Notes on symbols:
* Indicates 5% Import Duty Charge applies.
Ω Indicates 20% Import Duty Charge applies.
§ Indicates Artist's Resale Right applies.
† Indicates Standard VAT scheme applies, and the rate of 20% VAT will be charged on both hammer price and premium.