porcelain decorated with fancy blue painting has acquired wide popularity
in the whole wide world. Its value consists in its uniqueness and
decorativeness. Gzhel ware is decorated with flowers, leaves, bunches
and garlands of flowers. They are painted with the only colour - blue
cobalt, which is sometimes laid wide and rich dab and other times
in hardly noticeable touch of the brush. Touches of different intensity
create a rich, bright and very impressive picture.
history of Gzhel porcelain began in the seventeenth century. The porcelain
took the name "Gzhel" after the village Gzhel which is situated
in Moscow region. The first documentary evidence about the village
dates back to the 1339 ecclesiastical charter of the Russian tzar
Ivan Kalita. There, at the distance of 60 km from Moscow people had
been long engaged in pottery. Archaeological discoveries confirm the
existence of pottery on Gzhel territory since the beginning of the
crafters have always made not only table-ware, but also small genre
sculpture. These works depicted animals and people in action. From
time to time entire scenes of rural or urban life were depicted in
such sculptures. For example: traditional tea-drinking, beauties walking
or sitting at work, hens, roosters, birds and so on. All works have
a uniting feature - hand-made fancy blue painting on white background.
They are all truly hand-made! The artist paints every cup or vase
with a brush. That is why there are no two similar works, each one
being really unique and keeping the style of its creator.
craftsmen are true artists that join talent and centuries-old experience
of their predecessors.
hand-made works are labour-intensive. They always come in small numbers,
which often cannot meet the demand. Even in Russia not many people
have Gzhel ware; and collectors are very proud of their collections.
The original ware has the hallmark "Gzhel" which confirms
its authenticity and quality.
Gzhel works are created in plaster forms being cast from liquid porcelain
mass. After the first burning the form is painted by cobalt. Usually
the background stays white. Then painting is covered by glaze. Glaze
fuses and makes the surface of the work glassy, giving cobalt its
blue colour. Ornaments of gzhel items are normally based on plants
and flowers (roses are the most widely distributed kinds of gzhel
Gzhel art is charming, cheerful and original. It soaks up the beauty
of Russian nature and reserved, strong and expressive spirit of Russian
Gzhel is going through its golden age. There appear magnificent works
with their mysterious dark blue shades floating through the light
field. Fabulous patterns, garlands, free touches coupled with subtle
drawings - all of this makes Gzhel ware original, decorative and attractive.
It is nice to use Gzhel tableware. It has become very popular lately.
Many collectors have been collecting it. White and blue articles decorate
houses in different parts of the world. In our age of stamped fashion
the thirst for original things - made not by a machine but by man's
hands - continuously increases. The value of such things will undoubtedly
increase with time.