The Matryoshka Dolls, the embodiment of Russian art and culture, was born just some 100 years ago in the year 1890. The smoke and noise of Russia’s industrial revolution inspired a romantic notion that key to peace and harmony is a simpler way of life. Artists turned to Russia’s peasantry for the thread that would unite the country with its past.
The result of their efforts was the very first nesting doll, “The Rooster Girl.” She came from the Russian countryside bearing a black rooster and dressed in a kerchief and work apron. The wooden doll was hollow on the inside and could be opened up to reveal a second doll. This doll held another, which held another, and another, until a seemingly endless number of siblings had emerged from within the first. Each child carried an item telling of peasant life: a basket, a sickle, a bowl of porridge, a broom, and a younger brother in tow. Nestled in the centre was a baby swaddled in a patchwork quilt: hope for the future in the promise of generations to come. They named her Matryoshka, or “little mother”.
The inspiration for Funk For Hire’s Spring 2016 line are the famous and fascinating “Matryoshka Dolls” or the “Nesting Dolls” as they are often called. We have taken the prettily painted motherly figures that has its historical roots in Russia and fused them with traditionally adorned women from different parts of India. This is where the Gujrati, Kashmiri, Tamil, Bengali, Maharashtrian, Assamese, Rajasthani, all find a place in one quirky frame, giving you a print that successfully and seamlessly blends two cultures of Russia and India together through the universal language of Art.