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Craft & Folk Art of Central Russia
Russian crafts and folk art originated at the time of the formation of the first Slavic tribes. The peak of the handicraft popularity dates from the XIX century. The know-how for making and painting jewelry boxes, snuffboxes, and other knickknacks has been passed from one generation to another revealing an extraordinary intricacy of workmanship. Most items are named after the ancient villages where they are created. Each village has their own distinct traditions and techniques.
[Option #1] - Zhostovo and Fedoskino villages, 7 hours
We will start our tour in Moscow. After about ~ 1.5 hours of driving north of Moscow, we will make our first stop at Zhostovo village known for a distinctive style of lacquered painting of boxes and trays since the early 1800's. In Zhostovo we will visit the museum, the factory, and a family of local artists. The next stop is Fedoskino village, located on the picturesque banks of the Ucha River. Here we will also visit the local factory museum to see a unique collection of lacquer miniatures. On the way back to Moscow, we will make a short stop in Mytishi village to visit a local factory specializing in hand made Silk Batik production.
[Option #2] - Gzhel village, 7 hours
Handpainted in cobalt blue on white background, Gzhel derives its name from a small town some 50 km (30 mi) southeast of Moscow, where it is made. The blue-and-white traditional Russian porcelain Gzhel has many forms, usually tableware, vases, figurines, and folk toys. Stop at the local store to check the wide selection of pieces.
[Option 3] - The nesting dolls of Sergiev Posad, 7 hours
Serviev Posad is a colorful, truly Russian town known as the birthplace of the first Russian nesting doll Matryohka. We will start our tour in Moscow. Upon arrival, we will visit the local Monastery and Central Square, which are always full of merchants, monks, pilgrims and craftsmen. The next stop is a Museum dedicated to the Folk Toys produced in different regions of Russia. You will have a chance to get acquainted with collectable samples of matryoshkas, clay miniatures from Viatka region, and wooden dolls from Gorodetz town. At the end of the tour, we will visit a local family of artists, who will show us how they make matryoshkas.
[Option 4] - Gus-Khrustalny (Vladimir Region), 7 hours
The town of Gus-Khrustalny is located northwest of Moscow (~ 2 hours one way), in the picturesque countryside not far from ancient cities of Vladimir & Suzdal. The name of Gus-Khrustalny is associated in Russia with the production of artistic crystal glass in the same way as are Murano in Italy and Baccarat in France. During this trip we will also make a short stop in Vladimir city and, if there is enough time, ancient Suzdal city.
Transfers by private car to/from Moscow;
Museum admission fees (incl. guide);
Not included:Meals or snacks;
Special exhibitions fees;
Time/Fees for pick ups outside of the city center perimeter;
Golden Ring of Russia Getaway
Golden Ring of Russia in Depth
Moscow the City
Sergiyev Posad - the Holly Place
The Legacy of Doctor Zhivago
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