New show reveals the story of Fabergé’s opulent egg-making workshop

Easter is coming early this year, thanks to an exhibition that has just opened at the Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A) in London, dedicated to Russian goldsmith Carl Fabergé and his iconic eggs. After a lengthy tour, the show lands in London, where the largest collection of Imperial Easter Eggs will be on display, many of them for the first time in the UK. The show also has a section dedicated to the little-known branch of Faberge business which was located in London and catered to a sophisticated and elitist fringe of Edwardian society.

“The story of Carl Fabergé, the legendary Russian Imperial goldsmith, is one of supreme luxury and unparalleled craftsmanship,” exhibition curators Kieran McCarthy and Hanne Faurby said in a statement. Through the opulent creations he created, the curators added, the show “explores timeless stories of love, friendship and unashamed social escalation.”

Fabergé premises at 173 New Bond Street in 1911. Image courtesy of
The Fersman Mineralogical Museum, Moscow and Wartsky, London

With more than 200 objects on display, the exhibition focuses on the man behind the jewelry brand, his almost synonymous association with Russian elegance and the imperial family, and the Anglo-Russian bond forged in part by the works of Fabergé. . The Romanovs, the ruling family of Russia, were important patrons of Faberge and helped cement his role in high society as the official goldsmith of the imperial court. Her bespoke gifts, made of crystal, gold, and rose-cut diamonds, often incorporated miniature portraits of family members and were traded between relatives.

The second part of the exhibition explores how Fabergé took over from his father in the family business and helped propel it to new heights, fostering an atmosphere of unprecedented creativity and craftsmanship. Ultimately, the company that once looked after Russian Emperor Nicholas II and Empress Alexandra Feodorovna, as well as King Edward VII of England, King George V, Queen Mary and the Queen Victoria, was forced to turn to aid in the war effort when Russia entered World War I in 1914, when it began providing ammunition instead of miniature treasures.

Although it has ceased production, Fabergé’s legacy has endured and will surely continue to fascinate visitors as they learn about the history of the design house.

Below, check out the highlights of the exhibition, on view until May 2, 2022.

Tricentenary egg of Romanov, Fabergé. Foreman Henrik Wigström (1913) Photo: © Museums of the Moscow Kremlin.

The egg of the Moscow Kremlin, Fabergé.  1906 © Museums of the Moscow Kremlin.  Courtesy of the V&A.

The Moscow Kremlin Egg, Fabergé (1906). Photo: © Museums of the Moscow Kremlin. Courtesy of the V&A.

L'Oeuf du Palais Alexandre, g, Fabergé.  Foreman Henrik Wigström.  1908 © Museums of the Moscow Kremlin.  Courtesy of the V&A.

The Egguf of the Palais Alexandre, Fabergé. Foreman Henrik Wigström (1908). Photo: © Museums of the Moscow Kremlin. Courtesy of the V&A.

Chicken egg (1884-85). Courtesy of the V&A.

Mosaic egg (1913-14).  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

Mosaic egg (1913-14). Courtesy of the V&A.

Basket of Flowers Egg.  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

Egg Basket of Flowers (1901). Courtesy of the V&A.

Egguf of the colonnade (1909-10).  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

Egguf of the colonnade (1909-10). Courtesy of the V&A.

Red Cross with Egg Triptych, (1914-15). Courtesy of the V&A.

The diamond lattice egg.  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

The Diamond Lattice Egg (1891-1892). Courtesy of the V&A.

Installation view, "Fabergé in London: from romanticism to revolution" at the V&A.  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

View of the installation, “Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution” at the V&A. Courtesy of the V&A.

Installation view, "Fabergé in London: from romanticism to revolution" at the V&A.  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

View of the installation, “Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution” at the V&A. Courtesy of the V&A.

Installation view, "Fabergé in London: from romanticism to revolution" at the V&A.  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

View of the installation, “Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution” at the V&A. Courtesy of the V&A.

Installation view, "Fabergé in London: from romanticism to revolution" at the V&A.  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

View of the installation, “Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution” at the V&A. Courtesy of the V&A.

Installation view, "Fabergé in London: from romanticism to revolution" at the V&A.  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

View of the installation, “Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution” at the V&A. Courtesy of the V&A.

Installation view, "Fabergé in London: from romanticism to revolution" at the V&A.  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

View of the installation, “Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution” at the V&A. Courtesy of the V&A.

Installation view, "Fabergé in London: from romanticism to revolution" at the V&A.  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

View of the installation, “Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution” at the V&A. Courtesy of the V&A.

Installation view, "Fabergé in London: from romanticism to revolution" at the V&A.  Courtesy of the Victoria & Albert Museum.

View of the installation, “Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution” at the V&A. Courtesy of the V&A.

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