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Khokhloma. Khokhloma is a traditional folk Russian handicraft that appeared in the 17th century in villages under Nizhni Novgorod. One of the most famous kinds of folk Russian decorative painting, it is used in creation of splendid ornate wooden tableware and furniture. Khokloma.

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Khokhloma

Khokhloma is a traditional folk

Russian handicraft that appeared in the 17th century in villages under Nizhni Novgorod. One of the most famous kinds of folk

Russian decorative painting,

it is used in creation of

splendid ornate wooden

tableware and furniture.


Khokhloma

Khokloma

The handicraft owes its origin to the Old Believers, who, fleeing from persecutions of officials, took refuge in local woods. It should be noted, though, that even before their coming local villagers had been into making tableware from soft sorts of wood. Among the schismatics there were icon-painters, who taught local craftsmen this painting technology.


Khokhloma

A legend tells about a wonderful icon-painter Andrei Loskut, who denied to submit to religious reforms by Patriarch Nikon, and so, flew from the capital and settled in the forest. He painted wooden articles and icons in the old style. The patriarch learnt about this and sent soldiers to seize the freethinking monk. But Andrei did not give up; he burned his hut (and may be himself inside of it) and before that entrusted villagers with preserving his handicraft.


Khokhloma

Khokhloma artists apply free-hand brush painting, without preliminary marking out. Khokhloma imagery is decorative and ornamental: they convey the beauty of live nature in most generalized way. Images of blossoming bushes and berries have always been considered symbols of good things, well-being and happiness in Russia. This beautiful custom is still kept up nowadays by Khokhloma masters that decorate usual household things with ornate painting. They use floral ornaments composed of flowers, grass and berries. There are several kinds of this ornamentation in Khokhloma painting.


Khokhloma

Ornaments preliminary marking out. Khokhloma imagery is decorative and ornamental: they convey the beauty of live nature in most generalized way. Images of blossoming bushes and berries have always been considered symbols of good things, well-being and happiness in Russia. This beautiful custom is still kept up nowadays by Khokhloma masters that decorate usual household things with ornate painting. They use floral ornaments composed of flowers, grass and berries. There are several kinds of this ornamentation in Khokhloma painting.


Khokhloma

Ornaments preliminary marking out. Khokhloma imagery is decorative and ornamental: they convey the beauty of live nature in most generalized way. Images of blossoming bushes and berries have always been considered symbols of good things, well-being and happiness in Russia. This beautiful custom is still kept up nowadays by Khokhloma masters that decorate usual household things with ornate painting. They use floral ornaments composed of flowers, grass and berries. There are several kinds of this ornamentation in Khokhloma painting.


Khokhloma

The technology of Khokhloma painting has not changed a lot. There are several stages: first workpieces are turned on a lathe, and then the item is grounded with liquid clay mortar and oiled with flaxseed oil, and on the next stage treated with drying oil and dried.

This step is repeated three of four times.


Khokhloma

The next stage is tinning: the item is covered with aluminum metallic powder (once they used silver powder and later cheaper tin powder). Then the silver-coloured piece is ready for painting, which is done in oils, and is secured by drying in a furnace. Afterwards the work is covered with several layers of varnish, each of them dried separately in a stove. It is under the influence of high temperature, that varnish turns silver colour of the article into golden.


Khokhloma

Traditionally, black and red (rarely green as well) floral ornaments are painted against golden background. Golden, black and red – such a combination can be seen in various works of old Russian arts and crafts, but for Khokhloma these colurs are especially important: red adds warmth and softness to artificial gold, whereas black emphasizes its brilliance. Besides, rounded surfaces of painted ware have no sharp lines and, thus, beautifully disperse light.


Khokhloma

There are two main types of Khokhloma painting: upper painting - red and black ornaments against the golden background; and background painting– golden ornaments against a coloured background. The “upper painting” includes traditional “grass” and “leaf” ornamentation elements. “Grass” consists of blades of grass and springs painted with red or black on golden colour. “Leaf” painting is composed of oval leaves and berries usually spread around the stem. “Background” painting is based on a large golden design against red or black background. First the design is outlined, then the background is filled, and later small designs are added over the background.


Khokhloma

Tableware painting - red and black ornaments against the golden background; and background painting– golden ornaments against a coloured background. The “upper painting” includes traditional “grass” and “leaf” ornamentation elements. “Grass” consists of blades of grass and springs painted with red or black on golden colour. “Leaf” painting is composed of oval leaves and berries usually spread around the stem. “Background” painting is based on a large golden design against red or black background. First the design is outlined, then the background is filled, and later small designs are added over the background.


Khokhloma

Souvenirs painting - red and black ornaments against the golden background; and background painting– golden ornaments against a coloured background. The “upper painting” includes traditional “grass” and “leaf” ornamentation elements. “Grass” consists of blades of grass and springs painted with red or black on golden colour. “Leaf” painting is composed of oval leaves and berries usually spread around the stem. “Background” painting is based on a large golden design against red or black background. First the design is outlined, then the background is filled, and later small designs are added over the background.


Khokhloma

Unique works of Khoklhoma art can be seen in a Khokloma Museum that was open in the factory of Semenov in 1972. Among them there is a huge Khokloma spoon 2 meters and 67 cm large and a bowl one and a half meter large. Modern Khokhloma enterprises produce tableware, furniture, souvenirs and other goods.


Khokhloma

Khokloma in our days Museum that was open in the factory of Semenov in 1972. Among them there is a huge Khokloma spoon 2 meters and 67 cm large and a bowl one and a half meter large. Modern Khokhloma enterprises produce tableware, furniture, souvenirs and other goods.


Khokhloma

Gzhel Museum that was open in the factory of Semenov in 1972. Among them there is a huge Khokloma spoon 2 meters and 67 cm large and a bowl one and a half meter large. Modern Khokhloma enterprises produce tableware, furniture, souvenirs and other goods.


Khokhloma

Gzhel is the name of the picturesque district situated some 60 kilometers south east of Moscow, where the famous Gzhel ceramics is produced. Gzhel ceramics can be described as faience or majolica, a sort of pottery made of burnt white clay, covered with painted glaze. Its traditionally blue and dark blue ornaments and floral designs against the background of white glaze make gzhel easily recognizable.


Khokhloma

Gzhel follows old Russian traditions of folk arts and crafts. Gzhel masters paint every item exclusively by hand. The painting is made with cobalt, which acquires the characteristic blue colour in the technological process.


Khokhloma

Archeological studies on the territory of Gzhel District confirm the existence of pottery there from the early 14th century. That is not surprising, since Gzhel land was always rich in woods, rivers, and high-quality clays. From them on Gzhel underwent various periods in its 6-centuries long history.


Khokhloma

In 1972 the Gzhel Association was established on the basis of six minor manufactures located in several villages. Creative teams developed new samples. Absolutely new forms of items were created. The painting became richer and more up-to-date artistically.


Khokhloma

Throughout centuries Gzhel peasants made household pottery, izrazets and tiles. From the second half of the 18th century Gzhel became famous for production of majolica earthenware. These were items of colour clays with bright multicolored painting over white glaze. In the 19th century Gzhel masters developed material and technology new for them: first they manufactured semi-faience, then faience, and, finally, porcelain. Of special interest were works with one-colour painting: blue underglaze paint was applied with a brush, with detailed graphic representation of details. Numerous small manufactures and big enterprises were into production of porcelain and faience ceramics.


Khokhloma

Elements of ornament izrazets and tiles. From the second half of the 18th century Gzhel became famous for production of majolica earthenware. These were items of colour clays with bright multicolored painting over white glaze. In the 19th century Gzhel masters developed material and technology new for them: first they manufactured semi-faience, then faience, and, finally, porcelain. Of special interest were works with one-colour painting: blue underglaze paint was applied with a brush, with detailed graphic representation of details. Numerous small manufactures and big enterprises were into production of porcelain and faience ceramics.


Khokhloma

Elements of ornament izrazets and tiles. From the second half of the 18th century Gzhel became famous for production of majolica earthenware. These were items of colour clays with bright multicolored painting over white glaze. In the 19th century Gzhel masters developed material and technology new for them: first they manufactured semi-faience, then faience, and, finally, porcelain. Of special interest were works with one-colour painting: blue underglaze paint was applied with a brush, with detailed graphic representation of details. Numerous small manufactures and big enterprises were into production of porcelain and faience ceramics.


Khokhloma

Multicolored majolica 18 c. izrazets and tiles. From the second half of the 18th century Gzhel became famous for production of majolica earthenware. These were items of colour clays with bright multicolored painting over white glaze. In the 19th century Gzhel masters developed material and technology new for them: first they manufactured semi-faience, then faience, and, finally, porcelain. Of special interest were works with one-colour painting: blue underglaze paint was applied with a brush, with detailed graphic representation of details. Numerous small manufactures and big enterprises were into production of porcelain and faience ceramics.


Khokhloma

Multicolored majolica 18 c. izrazets and tiles. From the second half of the 18th century Gzhel became famous for production of majolica earthenware. These were items of colour clays with bright multicolored painting over white glaze. In the 19th century Gzhel masters developed material and technology new for them: first they manufactured semi-faience, then faience, and, finally, porcelain. Of special interest were works with one-colour painting: blue underglaze paint was applied with a brush, with detailed graphic representation of details. Numerous small manufactures and big enterprises were into production of porcelain and faience ceramics.


Khokhloma

Multicolored majolica 18 c. izrazets and tiles. From the second half of the 18th century Gzhel became famous for production of majolica earthenware. These were items of colour clays with bright multicolored painting over white glaze. In the 19th century Gzhel masters developed material and technology new for them: first they manufactured semi-faience, then faience, and, finally, porcelain. Of special interest were works with one-colour painting: blue underglaze paint was applied with a brush, with detailed graphic representation of details. Numerous small manufactures and big enterprises were into production of porcelain and faience ceramics.


Khokhloma

Faience ceramics 19 c. izrazets and tiles. From the second half of the 18th century Gzhel became famous for production of majolica earthenware. These were items of colour clays with bright multicolored painting over white glaze. In the 19th century Gzhel masters developed material and technology new for them: first they manufactured semi-faience, then faience, and, finally, porcelain. Of special interest were works with one-colour painting: blue underglaze paint was applied with a brush, with detailed graphic representation of details. Numerous small manufactures and big enterprises were into production of porcelain and faience ceramics.


Khokhloma

1970 . izrazets and tiles. From the second half of the 18th century Gzhel became famous for production of majolica earthenware. These were items of colour clays with bright multicolored painting over white glaze. In the 19th century Gzhel masters developed material and technology new for them: first they manufactured semi-faience, then faience, and, finally, porcelain. Of special interest were works with one-colour painting: blue underglaze paint was applied with a brush, with detailed graphic representation of details. Numerous small manufactures and big enterprises were into production of porcelain and faience ceramics.


Khokhloma

1970 izrazets and tiles. From the second half of the 18th century Gzhel became famous for production of majolica earthenware. These were items of colour clays with bright multicolored painting over white glaze. In the 19th century Gzhel masters developed material and technology new for them: first they manufactured semi-faience, then faience, and, finally, porcelain. Of special interest were works with one-colour painting: blue underglaze paint was applied with a brush, with detailed graphic representation of details. Numerous small manufactures and big enterprises were into production of porcelain and faience ceramics.


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