Russian Porcelain & Ceramics

The art of porcelain and ceramics has a long tradition in Russian history and culture. Black sea cultures first brought the color and craft of ceramics to the Russian heartland. The blue-and-white floral patterns of Gzhel porcelain originate in a small village outside Moscow, as Russia was slowly turning itself towards the cultures of Europe at the end of the 17th century. The famous Imperial Porcelain Manufacturing (IPM) was founded by Empress Elizabeth in 1744, to establish a “native trade and native art” for Russia. IPM became "Lomonosov Porcelain" in the Soviet period -- but did not waver in its quality or beauty. Lomonosov designers modified Imperial designs by incorporating traditional folk and abstract conceptual imagery of their time. Contemporary ceramic artists, such as Natalia Pavlova, continue to combine continental ceramic techniques, like majolica, with the folk craft traditions of their native Russia.