A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
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Property from a Private American Collection

A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917

Estimate: 60,000 - 80,000 GBP

Property from a Private American Collection

A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917

Estimate: 60,000 - 80,000 GBP

Lot sold:375,000GBP
(27 bids, reserve met)

Description

Property from a Private American Collection

A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917


the oklad repoussé and chased in Art Nouveau style, enamelled in opaque olive green and steel blue, the foliate motif set with various cabochon gems, including amethyst, moonstone, topaz and peridot, the border inscribed 'To our brother Nikon Alexandrovitch Molchanov / and his wife Maria Alexandrovna as a memento from / sisters and brothers / 28 April 1916'; struck on the lower edge with Fabergé K.Fabergé in Cyrillic under the Imperial warrant, 88 standard, scratched inventory number 17810; accompanied with original calling card inscribed 'Nikon Alexandrovitch Molchanov / N A Molchanov / The Icon of the Saviour (a present from the sisters and brothers) [we are] giving to our daughter Lydia Nikonov / Kuznetsova 1934, March 23, Harbin / M. and N. Molchanov'

31.2 by 26.8cm; 12¼ by 10½in.


Please note: Condition 11 of the Conditions of Business for Buyers (Online Only) is not applicable to this lot. 


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Condition Report

In very good condition overall. With only very minor loss to enamel, including a small area on the halo measuring 1mm. The surface with minor wear, consistent with age.


The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot provided by Sotheby's. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colours and shades which are different to the lot's actual colour and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation because Sotheby's is not a professional conservator or restorer but rather the condition report is a statement of opinion genuinely held by Sotheby's. For that reason, Sotheby's condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot.

Provenance

Presented to Nikon Alexandrovitch Molchanov (1871-1945) and his wife Maria Alexandrovna Lushnikova by Nikon's brothers and sisters on 28 April 1916.

Thence by descent to the present owner.

Literature

Listed in the Imperial Cabinet Record of items for presentation by Emperor Nicholas II to the King and Queen of Montenegro on the 50th Anniversary of the King's rule and their Golden Wedding Anniversary in 1910, as number six under icons for possible presentation: 'The Saviour / Fabergé no. 17810' costing 500 roubles.

Catalogue Note

The Imperial Cabinet Record


This icon was originally listed in the Imperial Cabinet Record of items for presentation by Emperor Nicholas II to the King and Queen of Montenegro on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of the King's rule and their Golden Wedding Anniversary in August of 1910. Items to be presented from the Imperial Cabinet of Emperor Nicholas II included a Field Marshall’s baton, a nephrite kovsh and a jewelled icon.


The present icon was included in the list of icons for possible presentation as number six: 'The Saviour / Fabergé no. 17810' costing 500 roubles. Number seven on the list appears to be the pair to the present icon with sequential scratched inventory number 17811: ‘Mother of God / Fabergé no. 17811’ also costing 500 roubles. It is likely that the high cost of the pair precluded their presentation and another icon from the list was given to the King and Queen of Montenegro in 1910. The icon was presumably held in Fabergé’s stock until 1916, when it was acquired by the family of Nikon Alexandrovitch Molchanov.


Nikon Molchanov


Nikon Molchanov (1871-1945) was a key figure in the Russian tea and sugar trade for almost fifty years. Nikon took over his family business trading tea when he turned eighteen, in the same year he married Maria Alexandrovna Lushnikova. He was a co-owner of the Tomsk firm Sobinnikov & Brothers Molchanovs, founded in 1890. Molchanov was a very successful business man and landowner, with houses in Paris, Baden Baden and a summer house on the bank of the river Tom. He also undertook many philanthropic causes. He was on the Tomsk committee to give aid to refugees, sponsored various women’s educational institutions and primary schools. He was also a generous supporter of the church and cultural intuitions throughout the city (G. Zherebtzov, Merchants Kandinsky and their Descendants, 2012, pp. 99-105).


The present Fabergé icon was given to Nikon Alexandrovitch Molchanov and his wife Maria Alexandrovna Lushnikova by Nikon's brothers and sisters on 28 April 1916. Maria Lushnikova was also from a prominent family and was the second cousin of Wassily Kandinsky, with whom she shared her maternal great-grandfather. Like many white Russian émigrés, the Molchanov family moved to Harbin following the Revolution in 1917. In 1934, Nikon gifted this Fabergé icon to his daughter Lydia, who cared for him as he aged, eventually dying in 1945. Lydia took the icon with her when she immigrated from China to Canada and finally to the United States, where she settled much later in life. Lydia did not have children of her own, but the icon passed to subsequent generations, remaining in the family from whose collection it is now presented.

A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
Property from a Private American Collection
A RARE AND IMPORTANT FABERGÉ GEM-SET SILVER AND EN PLEIN ENAMEL ICON OF CHRIST PANTOKRATOR, MOSCOW, 1908-1917
Lot Closed