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Tsarist Treasures to be Sold at Sotheby's Russian Art Sales
The tea service was made as a wedding gift on the occasion of Grand Duchess Anastasia Mikhailovna’s marriage to Friedrich Franz, Hereditary Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, who was related to Emperor Alexander III. The service is estimated to sell for $320/380,000 and will be a highlight of Sotheby’s upcoming sale of Russian Art on April 22, 2009. Photo: Sotheby's.
LONDON.- Sotheby’s will be offering a number of extraordinary objects with Russian Imperial provenance in its spring and summer 2009 Russian Art sales. An Imperial Russian silver tea service by Nichols and Plinke, St. Petersburg, 1879 from the Collection of Anastasia Mikhailovna - grand-daughter of Emperor Nicholas I - is one of the highlights of the Russian Art Sale in New York on 22 April 2009. Sotheby’s biannual sale of Russian Works of Art in London on 10 June 2009 will feature the two largest vases ever offered for sale at Sotheby’s estimated at £1.2 – 1.8 million and formerly in the collection of Grand Duke Vladimir Kirillovich - the son of Tsar Nicholas II’s first cousin.

An Imperial Russian Tea Service
The tea service was made as a wedding gift on the occasion of Grand Duchess Anastasia Mikhailovna’s marriage to Friedrich Franz, Hereditary Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin, who was related to Emperor Alexander III. It will be on view at Sotheby’s New York from April 17-21. Grand Duchess Anastasia Mikhailovna (1860 – 1922), the grand-daughter of Emperor Nicholas I, was an extremely charismatic figure, remembered by friends and contemporaries as “very beautiful, tall and slight with Grecian features, in fact, she seemed the perfect princess.” The Grand Duchess’s great-great grandchildren include Princess Alexia of Denmark and Greece and Prince Pavlos of Denmark, Crown Prince of Greece. The service is estimated to sell for $320/380,000 and will be a highlight of Sotheby’s upcoming sale of Russian Art on April 22, 2009.

A Magnificent Pair of Imperial Porcelain Vases
The magnificent pair of Imperial porcelain Palace vases (estimate: £1,200,000-1,800,000), with masterfully decorated ornamental plants in two-colour gold and copies of Old Master paintings, comes from the collection of Grand Duke Vladimir Kirillovich (1917-1992). In keeping with the European trend for decorating porcelain with academic subjects, which flourished in St. Petersburg during the reign of Nicholas I (1825-1855), this pair features scaled-down versions of Stable Interiors by Philips Wouwermans and beautifully demonstrate the majestic splendour of the court of the Tsar. Traditionally works of such importance and grandeur were intended as presentation gifts for foreign rulers or formed part of wedding dowries and were made at the special request of His Imperial Majesty. From the 1940s, the vases were in the collection of the Grand Duke Vladimir Kirillovich, who assumed the title Head of the Imperial Family and Emperor and Autocrat of all the Russians upon the death of his father. Vladimir Kirillovich died in 1992 and is buried in the Grand-ducal tomb of the Peter and Paul Fortress of Saint Petersburg – the last member of the Russian Royal family to be laid to rest there.



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April 16, 2009

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