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3 Сизиф 2009


The art of gemstone carving is one of the most ancient forms of Decorative and Applied Arts. In some cultural centres such as Central America and China, the gem stone carving traditions have existed for thousands of years. Later, in about 700-800 B.C., the gem stone processing started on the Continent, in ancient Greece and other countries of the Mediterranean area. Like many other forms of art, a gem stone carving flourished at the Renaissance winning a recognition in all largest countries of West in course of time. At the beginning of the 18th century gemstone carving appeared in Russia and after two years, owing to the activity of Karl Faberge company, the art obtained its classical form.

The 20th century became an epoch of shocking cataclysms, disasters and collapses for the world. During this century the mentality of man was constantly changing and his views on multitude of surrounding phenomena were changing accordingly.

1750 A.D..

The most powerful trace has been left by these changes on the painting and many its genres disappeared or changed their form and content completely. However, a gem stone carving art managed to avoid this sad fate and it still has a lot of admirers in different corners of the world. Therefore, at the moment, there are several developed and interesting schools of gem stone carving in the world. Each of these schools has its own unique features which were formed due to efforts of many artists and masters during a long period of time. The magazine you are holding in your hands tells about one of these schools - a Russian gem stone carving school.

The Mediterranean Area

750 B.C.

Delta of Nile

3000 B.C.

The gem stone carving art in Russia went a long way from a full oblivion to the revival and recognition. In the Soviet Union even the existence of this phenomenon was rejected as gem stone carving is expensive by definition and it intended for a wealthy customer who couldnt be found in the country with a communist social regime. Thus, for a long time the gem stone carving traditions were preserved only thanks to the activity of few enthusiasts working exclusively under the influence of their passion to the beauty of stone. The true revival of the Russian school of gem stone carving started at the end of the eighties after the changes of social and economic situation in the country. In 1989 separate lone masters started to share their experience actively and got unite d into big artistic associations.


5000 B.C.


1200 B.C.

That year in particular is considered to be a starting point in the chronology of gem stone carving art in new Russia and it is not difficult to count that this year Russian gem stone carving art celebrates its 20th anniversary. During such a short period the lost secrets of gem stone carving craft have not only been restored but made next steps forward. Today a few hundred thousand talented artists and masters deal with a gem stone carving in Russia. The best of them live and work in St.Petersburg which can be called with certainty a gem stone carving centre of Russia. This journal is dedicated to the achievements, traditions and new trends formed in gem stone carving in St.Petersburg in particular.



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