News - Fabergé: A Life of its Own

A century after the Russian Revolution, and just in time for Easter, the world’s most valuable Easter egg is revealed on film from 10th April...

One hundred years after the original House of Fabergé was forcibly closed by Bolshevik revolutionaries in St Petersburg, Fabergé: A Life of its Own charts the rich history behind the iconic company, from the unstoppable rise of ‘artist jeweller’ Peter Carl Fabergé in 19th century Imperial Russia to the enduring legacy of Fabergé today.

Shot in multiple locations across Europe, USA and Russia, the film features Fabergé pieces by gracious courtesy of Her Majesty the Queen in London, His Serene Highness Prince Albert in Monaco, and many more of the world’s great collectors. The film also includes interviews with Tatiana and Sarah Fabergé, and a distinguished group of international museum curators, independent art experts and historians.

Culminating in the exclusive unveiling of what is generally perceived to be the single most spectacular and valuable Fabergé object ever produced – the Winter Egg of 1913 - the documentary also presents hundreds of other exquisite Fabergé pieces in intricate detail, with many revealed for the very first time.

Writer/Director Patrick Mark said, “Making this film has been a wonderful experience. Holding a Fabergé egg in your hands is at first nerve-wracking, because you’re determined not to drop it; but also emotional, because these were such personal gifts, each one marking a particular moment in the lives of the ultimately tragic Romanovs. While one Fabergé egg was designed to cheer up the Tsarina, homesick for her native Denmark, another marks the birth of a long-prayed for son, the haemophiliac Tsarevich Alexei. These emotional echoes, added to the incredible workmanship, make Fabergé’s eggs endlessly fascinating. Every piece is immaculately finished, sparkling with diamonds, gold and platinum or gently glowing with the firm’s signature guilloché enamels.”

Producer Alice Ilich added “In making the film, our greatest stroke of good fortune was in accessing Fabergé’s Winter Egg of 1913. Many Fabergé authorities consider this to be the Holy Grail, the single most remarkable object ever created by the company. Made of frosted rock crystal, platinum and rose diamonds, the egg perfectly encapsulates the end of the unforgiving Russian winter and the arrival of Easter. This magical egg was designed at Fabergé by a young woman called Alma Pihl, only 23 at the time. It’s hard to put a value on this unique object - but an unofficial estimate would be in the region of $60m.”

Here are some of the beautiful artworks created by Fabergé that you can see in more detail in the documentary.

Tsar Nicholas II of Russia, formal photograph in Fabergé frame (photograph c1890)

The Love Trophy Egg by Fabergé, presented by Tsar Nicholas II to his mother, the Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna (Easter 1907)

The Emerald Diaghilev Egg by Fabergé

The Winter Egg

The Blue Serpent Egg by Fabergé, presented by Tsar Nicholas II to his mother, the Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna (Easter 1885)

Detail of the ‘Bismark box’ with miniature portrait of Tsar Alexander III set with large diamonds and red sunburst enamel (1884)

The Romanov Necklace by Fabergé 

Detail of a handle by Fabergé, modeled with two serpents holding a central pearl 

Photograph of a veiled Tsarina Maria Feodorvna (c.1870)

Director Patrick Mark in Moscow with the Unfinished Egg of 1917

Detail of the Catherine the Great Egg by Fabergé, presented by Tsar Nicholas II to his mother, the Dowager Empress Maria Feodorovna (Easter 1914)

Detail of gold cigarette cases by Fabergé, presented by Princess Cecile Murat to her lover, Charles Luzarche d’Azay (early 20th century)

The Caucasus Egg by Fabergé, presented by Tsar Alexander III to his wife, Tsarina Maria Feodorovna (Easter 1893)

FABERGÉ: A LIFE OF ITS OWN will be released on iTunes, On Demand, DVD and Blu-ray
from 10 April

Images courtesy of Mark Stewart Productions

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