This interesting pyramid-shaped casket has been painted by a talented Palekh artist Natalie Brovkina. The box's sides show the scenes from different Russian folk fairy-tales!
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The box's front side depicts a final scene from the fairy-tale "Sivka-Burka". In this tale Ivan has jumped on Sivka-Burka, kissed a princess in a window and took a golden ring from her finger and in the end has married her.
The painting on the right side is based on the popular story of, "The Sleeping Beauty." This story was originally put to pen by French writer Charles Perrault in 1696, but in Russia it is known after poetry of Alexander Pushkin.
The little long-awaited Princess was born in the kingdom. Her parents organized a sumptuous feast and invited seven young fairies. In those times fairies had a marvelous custom to endow their goddaughters with merits and virtues. When the feast was about to begin, the aged fairy appeared whom no one had thought to invite because people supposed her to be dead or bewitched. She declared that the princess would prick her hand with a spindle, and die of it. The King, the Queen, and all the guests were very afraid of this terrible gift. But at this moment one of the young fairies said: "Take comfort, your Majesties, your daughter won't not die. The princess will indeed prick her hand with a spindle. But instead of dying she will merely fall into a profound slumber that will last a hundred years. At the end of that time a king's son will come to awaken her." The prophecy came true. But not only the princess but the whole kingdom fell into a deep sleep. And in the happy end the handsome prince who has come to the enchanted kingdom to destroy the evil spell and awake the princess by his sweet kiss.
On the back side of this casket we can see fragments from a Tale of a Little hump-backed horse.
Once upon a time onne of three sons- Ivan caught the magic mare that trampled down wheat on his father's field. This mare promised Ivan to present three foals in exchange for freedom. Later two of these foals turned into the steeds with golden manes while the third one turned into the Humpbacked Little Pony. The old greedy tsar obliged Ivan to fulfill different tasks, and the Humpbacked Little Pony always helped him. One of them was to catch and bring Fire-Bird. This task was succesfully fulfilled with the help of Hump-backed horse.Then tsar askeed for the last errand: instead of the tsar Ivan dipped himself in three cauldrons of boiling water, boiling milk and ice cold water, and transformed into a very handsome young man! After Ivan tsar has jumped in the first cauldrons and has boiled there...And , of cource, Ivan married after that the best girl in Kingdom.
On the left hand side we can see a Baba Yaga near by her Hut. Top of the casket shows us a rich golden filigree.
The exterior of the box's base is decorated with nice floral pattern painted in gold and silver.
The box is constructed from paper-mache.
Black lacquer is used to paint the exterior of the piece while red lacquer completes the interior of the work. The lid is hinged and the box rests on four legs. The work is signed with the artist name and Palekh on the top of the box.
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