Upcoming Auctions and Events

Global notice COVID-19 Important notice
A VERY RARE AND IMPORTANT SOVIET PORCELAIN GROUP OF THE PAPANIN EXPEDITION
These lots have been imported from outside the EU … Read more PROPERTY FROM AN IMPORTANT PRIVATE COLLECTION OF SOVIET PORCELAIN
A VERY RARE AND IMPORTANT SOVIET PORCELAIN GROUP OF THE PAPANIN EXPEDITION

BY THE LOMONOSOV PORCELAIN FACTORY, LENINGRAD, 1938

Details
A VERY RARE AND IMPORTANT SOVIET PORCELAIN GROUP OF THE PAPANIN EXPEDITION
BY THE LOMONOSOV PORCELAIN FACTORY, LENINGRAD, 1938
Realistically modelled as four polar explorers Ivan Papanin, Evgenii Fedorov, Ernst Krenkel, and Petr Shyrshov with Papanin’s dog, after the model by Natalia Danko of 1938, created to commemorate the North Pole expedition of 1937-1938, inscribed on base ‘N.Danko’, marked with a stamped black factory mark and red jubilee mark, further inscribed with Cyrillic initials ‘L.N.’
15¾ in. (40 cm.) high
Special Notice

These lots have been imported from outside the EU for sale using a Temporary Import regime. Import VAT is payable (at 5%) on the Hammer price. VAT is also payable (at 20%) on the buyer’s Premium on a VAT inclusive basis. When a buyer of such a lot has registered an EU address but wishes to export the lot or complete the import into another EU country, he must advise Christie's immediately after the auction.

Brought to you by

Aleksandra Babenko
Aleksandra Babenko

Lot Essay

This rare porcelain figure was designed by Natalia Danko to commemorate a famous Soviet polar expedition, led by Ivan Papanin (1894-1986). In 1937 the Soviet Union was actively exploring its Arctic coast. A polar station was opened on a drifting ice floe, allowing for a wide range of scientific observations.

Ivan Papanin and his team of scientists spent 274 days drifting on a 30 m² ice block all the way from the North Pole to the edge of the Arctic until they were rescued by two icebreakers in February 1938. Ivan Papanin’s crew, officially called the North Pole-1 Station, carried out extensive research in the Arctic area. Upon their return, all members of the expedition received the title ‘Hero of the Soviet Union’.

The Papanin expedition received a lot of attention as a prominent Soviet achievement. Natalia Danko, who at that time was mostly working on Soviet propaganda porcelain, was asked to design a special model featuring the polar explorers. The figure is marked with a special factory mark designed to commemorate the twentieth anniversary of the Revolution.

For comparative models, see V. Levshenkov, Tvorchestvo Sester Danko, St Petersburg, 2012, pp. 352-353, illustrated, also see E. Sametskaya, Sovetskii Agitatsionyi Farfor, Moscow, 2004, p. 175, no. 49 [56], and Exhibition Catalogue, Oda k Radosti, Moscow, 2008, p. 165, no. 101. A similar model is held in the collection of Kuskovo Palace, Moscow.

More from Russian Art

View All
View All