Though the building and decoration of the Palace was carried out by a succession of architects, its interiors and architecture show a great unity of style; the Palace's decor is completely integrated with its architecture. Its vast art collections won the Palace world renown.
Articles of ivory and amber
The art of working precious metals - gold and silver -had been practised in Russia since long ago. Its centre was the Armoury of the Moscow Kremlin, which had a special gold and silver workshop where precious objects for the court were made. A typical example of such products is a filigreed casket adorned with enamel, river pearls and precious stones. The casket, made in the seventeenth century at the Armoury, was designed for keeping woman's ornaments, and might have belonged to the Tsarina or her daughters.
After the founding of St Petersburg, Peter the Great transferred the best jewellers to the new capital, where they built up, together with numerous craftsmen arriving from Western countries, the Jewellers' Shops. In the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries, the city had a large number of skilled masters employed mostly by the Imperial court, especially in the reign of Catherine II. One of the most famous court jewellers in the eighteenth century was Iwer Buch, a Dutch by birth, who had arrived to St Petersburg from Norway and joined the silversmiths' guild in 1776. Designs for Buch's articles intended for the court were created by the best architects. Drawings by the Russian architect Nikolai Lvov - his designs for the Gold service commissioned for Catherine II - are published for the first time. Buch fulfilled many commissions of Paul I for the Mikhailovsky Castle then being built in St Petersburg: silver console tables, chandeliers, candelabra, a balustrade for the State Bedroom, etc.
Silver for the Pavlovsk Palace Church-church plate, candlesticks, lamps and chandeliers-was designed by the Moscow architect Matvei Kazakov. Carl Faberge was one of the most talented St Petersburg jewellers of the second half of the nineteenth century. His father, Gustave Faberge, established a jewellery shop in the Russian capital in the 1840s. Towards the twentieth century it grew into a large and extremely fashionable company, which had its departments not only in major Russian cities, but even in London. The house of Faberge employed the best jewellers, especially notable for their skill in working hard stones from the Urals. Yuli Rapoport distinguished himself as a jeweller with a fine taste for combining coloured stones with precious metals. The Faberge products occupy pride of place in many museums throughout the world, beginning with the State Armoury of the Moscow Kremlin.
|© Pavlovsk, 1999-2006|