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Marquetry in Russia

Russia has a long history of the arts in all its diversities.

From the lyrical music of Tchaikovsky to the magnificence of the palaces of St. Petersburg - Russia has excelled in every branch of the creative arts.

Marquetry is, of course, most certainly one of those arts Russia excels at. To demonstrate the validity of that statement, we are featuring the work of Russian marquetry artist VIKAR. Before you study and enjoy the superb marquetry work of VIKAR, just take a few moments to read VIKAR's description of the themes and motivations relating to his awe inspiring works.

The following are VIKAR's own words:

"In Russia marquetry technique has appeared at Peter the Great. Foreign masters of a wooden mosaic were invited for an ornament of palaces and halls of St.-Petersburg. Walls, floors, doors and furniture were inlaid with a mosaic. Today in museums of city separate fragments of unique works were kept.

In due course marquetry has captured all country. In the end of the last century, gift shops have been filled by set of mosaic pictures in a network of consumer goods. Separate masters carried out the state orders of greater sizes. But, with arrival of computer technologies, manual skills on manufacture have lost the importance. It has perniciously affected art of a wooden mosaic. Automatic devices were not able to transfer thin textural figure. Marquetry has practically disappeared. Only separate fans continue to decorate furniture and to create wooden panels in manual execution. I concern to their number also.

There is no answer to a question why I have chosen marquetry. There is no answer also to a question why I have taken a great interest in art in 35 years. Once in my life there was a complicated question in a choice of a direction: a science or art? The intuition prompted that simultaneously to be in engaged in both is impossible. The choice has fallen on lifelong art. "From physicists in lyrics" - there is such Russian saying.

My full illiteracy in the field of marquetry has unexpectedly generated a new direction - I have entered a semitone that is there was a smooth transition from dark tone of wood to light. That I have broken no written rule, not knowing about that!! Canons of main principle of marquetry. But my opportunities of execution of various themes became unlimited. I have overtaken art paints. Hence, I have crossed through pernicious limitation of stylization and simplified nature of the chosen figure. At my work, for example, the mouth has lips and teeth, and an eye has eyelashes and a pupil. However, the volume of work thus has increased many times over.

With a gradual deepening in the world of art I have defined, that to me on a shower the complex psychological moments in human life. A side of a life and death. Experiencing with the heroes, I completely reincarnate in their next images. And up to the end I feel in them, like a duck in water. In passing, I well know anatomy of a human face."


Thank you for sharing your thoughts and ideas with us VIKAR - and now we will enjoy some fine examples of Russian marquetry:


VIKAR - Self Portrait

World of Art
Display Gallery featuring several of VIKAR's large scale marquetry works

Gala from "Time Out"
Detail from "Time Out"


Emblema from "Time Out"

Golova from "Time Out"

Time Out

Even more of this superb Russian marquetry can be found at:

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