Awesome Nesting Doll Collections That Will Inspire You

Nesting dolls are one of those things for which tourists come to Russia. It became popular far beyond its historic homeland. But from what is most interesting, the matryoshka appeared relatively recently – at the end of the last century. But for such a relatively short period, this element of Russian culture could become not only a part of it, but also an actual embodiment. What is a nesting doll called? It is Matryoshka. But there is more to that.

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It turns out that the ancestor of nesting dolls was “born” in Japan. It was a figure of a man named Fukurum, a Buddhist sage. This figure opened, and inside it there were some more figures. This product was brought to Russia from the Japanese island of Honshu. But the fate of Russian in the creation of matryoshka cannot be underestimated. This is evidenced by one Japanese legend, according to which a Russian monk made a figure of Fukuruma. His name, unfortunately, is unknown.

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  • The first Russian nesting dolls were made by master Sergey Malyutin and VasilyZvezdochkin. She was an eight-seater. The first figure is a girl; the second is a boy, etc. Interestingly, all these figures were completely different, and the last, eighth – represented a small child.
  • Usually dolls are made of wood (hardwood). The best tree for making nesting dolls is linden, which should be chopped immediately after winter, when there is a lot of juice in the tree.
  • The matryoshka became popular in 1900, when the World Fair was held in Paris. There, this Russian product received not only a medal, but also worldwide recognition.

From the end of the 19th century, various nesting dolls survived to us, in which girls were dressed in sundresses, dancing peasants, hussars, and mistresses. Plots could be any – could be drawn by one person or more. Very popular were the plots with a wedding, animals and images of entire families.

Today nesting dolls are made in SergievPosad

This is a long-time Russian center where toys are made. You should not, of course, forget about the individual craftsmen who make dolls at home. In such people it is easier to order a nested doll – after all, you can come up with your own plot, which will be depicted on it.

  • A pretty peasant woman in a sundress and a flowered shawl, hiding all her family in herself, this is exactly how the Russian doll Matreshka is known to the world. This is not just one of the characteristic symbols of Russia, but also an indicator of its originality.
  • The decorative doll owes its appearance to the Japanese prototype the sage Fukurume, whose figure was brought to Russia from the island of Honshu at the end of the 19th century. The owners of the unusual Japanese curiosity were the Mamontov family, successful industrialists engaged in educational activities and in charge of many creative individuals.

The toy was a wooden case decorated under the figure of a bald old man named Fukurum, opening which you could see the same toy hidden in it, but smaller. There were several identical toys and each one fit in the previous one. The doll greatly amused the guests of the evening by the Mamontovs, where she was first introduced and immediately aroused the lively interest of the famous Russian artist Sergey Milyutin. The figure was given to the workshop “Children’s Education”, specializing in the production of children’s toys, where staff turner VasilyZvezdochkin began making Russian dolls in the image and likeness of the Japanese. The toy figures of the new wooden product in the same way as in the Japanese doll, were invested one into another and were reduced copies of the previous ones.

The Rise of Russian Culture

This time is characterized by an unprecedented rise in the development of Russian culture and art, the emergence of a special interest in them. Creative associations were created, the main purpose of which was to search for cultural trends that revive Russian identity.

The first Russian detachable figure was a Russian maiden named Matryoshka in a flowered shawl and with a black rooster in her hand. The name of the wooden doll was not chosen by chance – in Ancient Russia the name “Matryona” was the most popular among the women, the name comes from the Latin Matrona and translates as “noble woman”. In addition, the basis of the name Matryona is the word “mother”. That is why women with such a name were associated with a strong, healous health reproductive woman with a large family. To this day, this wooden doll is a symbol of motherhood.

After the closure of the “Children’s Workshop”, the production of nesting dolls did not stop, and it began with a new force in SergievPasad. The first wooden dolls were quite expensive, but despite this, gained frenzied popularity. Orders for this painted toy fell from all over Europe! In addition to the standard image of the Russian beauty, on the figures one could see, for example, the image of the bride and groom, with relatives inside, illustrations of various popular fairy tales, military images and many other pictures that came out from under the brush of a skilled craftsman. In addition, the dolls differed in the number of inserts, the number of which could significantly exceed those of the first copies.

The Motive

The main motive for the development of the art of painting matryoshka was the image of the surrounding reality, modern life. After the production of such famous wooden dolls went beyond SergievPasada, the images on the figures became so diverse that even the first Russian girl depicted on the doll, each master had his own. Someone saw it more squat, a little rough, others it turned out gentle and elongated – each master reflected in his paintings his attitude to life.

The finished first matryoshka consisted of a group of children: from the eldest girl to the baby wrapped in diapers. Later, as the popularity of such wooden souvenirs increased, manufacturers began to produce dolls of various compositions. Today, the basic concept of nesting dolls undergoes several changes, and on wooden figures you can see countless images, ranging from portrait to image of famous personalities. But as a souvenir, many people prefer to buy a standard beautiful Russian doll.

Russian matryoshka, carved out of wood and brightly painted, conquered the whole world

At the end of the 19th century, the Mamontov family famous Russian industrialists and philanthropists whether from Paris, or from the island of Honshu, someone brought a Japanese finely carved Buddhist figure of Fukurudzhi (Fukurum), which came with a “surprise” – it was divided into two parts . Inside it is hidden another one, smaller, which also consisted of two halves. In total there were five such pupae.

  • It was assumed that it was this figure that prompted the Russians to create their own version of a split toy, embodied in the form of a peasant girl, soon christened by the popular name Matryoshka (Matryona).
  • Nowadays, they still cite the legend of the Japanese origin of the nested doll, but it does not have documentary evidence.

The history of the development of toy crafts in Russia suggests that the tradition of turning and painting wooden eggs for Easter contributed to the creation of the Russian nesting dolls.

Alexa Olson