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Home > Collection > Palekh > Over $500

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Title: Tale of Frog Princess
Artist: Bonokin Dmitriy
Size: 18.5x18.5x4.5
Size (inches): 7.25x7.25x1.75
Price: $1150

This large box was painted by a talented artist Dmitry Bonokin from the village of Palekh. The subject of this work is based on the popular Russian Fairy-Tale of Princess Frog.
Plot of the tale is following.
The old Tsar tells his three sons -Ivan and his brothers to shoot their arrows blindfolded, into a random direction to find a wife. The arrows of Ivan's brothers land near the houses of the rich and beautiful maidens. The happy Tsar welcomes his daughters-in-law on the threshold of his palace.
In this composition Buldakova depicts the youngest brother, Prince Ivan, whose arrow landed in the swamp near a frog. So, the poor prince is destined to marry the Frog!
Then, the three brothers were invited to a large feast, and each of them is told to bring his wife. Everyone makes fun of poor Ivan who has come alone. It lasts until the gorgeous Vasilisa the Wise appears! She creates a miniature lake full of swans with just one nonchalant wave of her hand in the palace of the Tsar.
Prince Ivan has received the magic clew from the old man. This clew will help him to find Vasilisa the Wise who disappeared after Ivan had burnt down her frog skin. The clew leads Ivan to the palace of Koshchei the Deathless where Vasilisa languishes in captivity. Ivan must kill Koshchei and release his beloved wife. To fulfill this task, he should take out the needle that contains Koshchei's death from the chest hanging on the old oak, and break it. So, Ivan fulfill all the tasks and kill Koshey and they live happily with Vasilisa.
The composition of this box is very interesting and remind us that Palekh lacquer miniature painting came from and based on iconic style of painting. If you will take a look at some of the icons, you will see that around major large painting might be several so called stamps or the smaller paintings usually located in the corners. Here we can see the major painting which shows the dance of Princess Vasilisa, and in four corners there are small paintings with other scenes from the tale : the three brothers shooting their arrows in different directions, Ivan has found his arrows in the pond with a frog, Ivan went to find Vasilisa and found Baba Yaga hut on chicken legs and the final- the happiness of Ivan and Vasilisa.
Gold and aluminum are used to detail and highlight virtually every portion of the composition. This enhances the already lustrous palette and makes the scene sparkle from within. Gold is also used to frame the painting with attractive patterns, whilee he sides of the box are decorated with rich ornament painted in silver and gold colors.
The box is constructed out of paper-mache. Black lacquer covers the exterior and red lacquer covers the interior of the box. The box has a hinge at the top of the scene. The work is signed with the artist's name, Palekh, the title and the year of 2020.

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