Red nesting dolls will soon become the most popular sports souvenir in the United States, next to squishies squished to repress anger. In fact, many people opt in giving nesting dolls as wedding presents. Representatives of several US manufacturing companies that are preparing a real breakthrough in the market of sports souvenirs are sure of this. The shape and the idea will remain from the dolls, and instead of the usual smiling pink-cheeked young ladies, there will be stars of American sport.

The Companies

Representatives of several US manufacturing companies that are preparing a real breakthrough in the market of sports souvenirs are sure of this. The shape and the idea will remain from the dolls, and instead of the usual smiling pink-cheeked young ladies there will be stars of American sport.

Several well-known companies in the US urgently deal with licensing rights and enter into contracts for the manufacture of such toys. One of them – “Bensussen Deutsch & Associates” from Washington State back in April last year, presented a batch of basketball dolls for the NBA club “Memphis”. Since then, 11 more basketball teams have ordered the same souvenirs. Another company, Coopersberg Sports from the state of Pennsylvania, received a license from the American Baseball League, as well as NASCAR, an association of race drivers. According to Scott Pino, president of the Kuppersberg Sports, matryoshka athletes should be the new main collectibles in the next three to five years.

The idea of introducing the dolls to the American sports market belongs to the company Newscrafters, based in Encino, California, which is headed by former Ukrainian basketball player Alexander Krylov, ITAR-TASS reported.

Also, read about the article from ESPN regarding the popularity of Russian nesting dolls.

How did the Russian nesting doll appear?

The nested doll is a visiting souvenir card of Russia and the pride of the national decorative art. Time helps in evolving the traditional Russian Dolls. The wooden doll, which embodies the originality of style and popular character, today is snapped up by many tourists, especially foreign ones. Few people know that the first matryoshka appeared only at the end of the 19th century. Many sources, including the site, note that there are several versions of the appearance of a split doll. According to the first, once the Mamontov family, who were notable industrialists and patrons of art, presented an interesting Japanese statuette. It was a Buddhist figure of St. Furukuji, which broke into two halves, and inside it was another, slightly smaller, which was also divided into two parts. There were five such figures in total. They say that it was this gift that pushed the Russians create your own national toy, dressed in the image of a village girl with the national name Matryoshka (from Matryona).

If you believe the other version, the first matryoshka was made on the model brought from Japan. The Eastern counterpart looked quite ridiculous: they were several figures of the Japanese sage Furukum, depicted as a bald old man with his head stretched upward from many thoughts and thoughts. One way or another, but the first Russian nesting dolls began to be created in the Mamontov workshop and sold in the store “Children’s Education”. The author of the form of a wooden doll called turner V. Zvezdochkina.

The Origination

Sergiev Posad is considered to be the true birthplace of stacking dolls – a huge center for handicraft toy production. The site notes that its masters always kept abreast of the times and vividly picked up fresh and original ideas. Naturally, they were attracted by the matryoshka, which fascinated by its national character and originality of the design.

The world started talking about the Russian national doll in 1900 after it was presented at the World Exhibition in Paris. Then the workshop SergievPosad did not have time to take orders for the manufacture of large batches of dolls from foreigners. Later, she became a frequent guest at exhibitions in Leipzig and London, the national toy was also taken to Greece, Turkey and the states of the Middle East.

  • For many years of existence, the matryoshka has changed its appearance more than once. The classical styles of painting flowers or ancient ornaments were replaced by dolls with the “face” of ancient Russian boyars or knights, fairytale and historical heroes (Napoleon, Kutuzov were released).
  • Not less well-known center for the manufacture of dolls was the nearby town of Semenovo and the village of Merinovo. The dolls made here most vividly reflect the color of the Russian nesting dolls: they are distinguished by lush and relaxed painting. And the most complex in manufacturing technology is considered to be a detachable doll from Vyatka. The local craftsmen inlaid the toy with straw. Such a doll could not be put on the conveyor of mass production due to the complexity of the manufacturing process, which, in addition to resource costs, required the highest skill.
  • In the 80s of the last century, the author’s dolls of the artist S. Nechaev gained popularity. At this time, the groove and painting of folk dolls reached their creative peak. Nesting dolls were made for every taste: different shapes, sizes and styles. Thanks to the active flow of tourists, the matryoshka from the masterpiece of national creativity has become the most popular product, which was massively bought by foreigners and thus brought substantial profits to Russian craftsmen. Today, the most common and popular in the world is a five-seatednesting doll. There are also detachable dolls in seven, ten and fifteen places. And in 1913, they made a unique and record-breaking 48-seater nesting doll.

The faces of SergievPosad’s early nesting dolls were oval, with hard features. As the top of the dolls was significantly enlarged, the faces dominated the body. The dolls looked primitive and had a strong imbalance, but were very expressive. In this early period, painting dolls was considered a secondary matter. In the first place came the skill of a turner, able to make workpieces with very thin sides. Professional artists who painted the first dolls did it for their own pleasure and did not take their work seriously. That is why the first dolls look very primitive.

A little later, folk art tradition took over. Icon painters from SergievPosad contributed to the further development of the pictorial style of the matryoshka doll. Icon painters mainly focused on the figure of a man and his face. The combination of the early type of matryoshka from SergievPosad with the tradition of the local icon painting school is confirmed both stylistically and in fact.

In the present, nesting dolls are rampant and popular among kids. These toys can be seen all over toy stores, like the Mickey Mouse, Toy Story, Aladdin, and Winnie the Pooh dolls.

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