Kuznetsov’s porcelain

Kuznetsov's porcelain

History of Kuznetsov’s porcelain: origin and development

Kuznetsov’s porcelain dates back to 1832, when the factory in Dulevo began its work. But twenty years earlier, Yakov Kuznetsov organized the production of faience in Gzhel. His son Terenty found a good location for a new venture. In the vicinity of Dulevo there were many forests and swamps, from which firewood and peat for stoves were obtained. The local population traditionally earned money by handicrafts, since the conditions for agriculture were bad, so there was no shortage of workers. In 1841 Terenty’s son Sidor opened a factory in Riga. The family business gradually grew due to the construction and purchase of factories from bankrupt competitors.

Kuznetsov's porcelain. Matvey Kuznetsov. Image on a plate.
Matvey Kuznetsov. Image on a plate.

Kuznetsov’s porcelain reached its peak under Matvey Sidorovich Kuznetsov, who was the only heir to his father. From childhood he was prepared for the future management of the family business: as a teenager, he worked at the Riga factory and knew the specifics of all processes, and studying at a commercial school developed his business acumen.

Kuznetsov’s porcelain reached its peak under Matvey Sidorovich Kuznetsov, who was the only heir to his father. From childhood he was prepared for the future management of the family business: as a teenager, he worked at the Riga factory and knew the specifics of all processes, and studying at a commercial school developed his business acumen.

Kuznetsov's porcelain

In 1887, the “MS Kuznetsov’s Partnership for the Production of Porcelain, Earthenware and Majolica Products” was founded. In the later stages, it included eight enterprises that brought 2/3 of the income from the entire porcelain and faience industry in Russia. Part of the funds was spent on landscaping: houses for workers, schools for their children and churches were erected.

At the turn of the century, the Partnership received prizes at international exhibitions in Europe and earned the status of a supplier to the imperial court. Matvey Kuznetsov died in 1911, and the enterprises were nationalized after the October Revolution.

The heirs managed to preserve only the Riga factory for a while, but it was also taken away in 1940. The grandson of Matvey Kuznetsov was shot, some of the relatives were exiled to Siberia, and someone remained in Riga and eventually moved to Europe. The factories continued to operate under Soviet rule, expanding the assortment with propaganda and avant-garde porcelain. The technical equipment was so advanced that it did not require modernization until the 1930s.

Kuznetsov's porcelain

Factories and plants of the Kuznetsov Partnership

Dulevsky (1832). Mass production of porcelain for Russia and the Middle East. Dishes, vases and figurines with characteristic bright decor were produced.

Riga (1841). Initially, it was founded as a branch of Dulevskaya and worked until the 2000s. Products made on it are of high collection value.

Auerbach Factory (1829). Purchased by Matvey Kuznetsov in 1870. Over time, it became known as the Tver Factory. Produced a wide range of products from dinner sets and scattered serving items to interior decorations, fireplaces and iconostases. In the Soviet years it was renamed into Konakovsky faience factory, which has gone bankrupt by now.

Kuznetsov's porcelain

Budyansky (1887). Produced inexpensive but high-quality earthenware dishes and decorative ceramics. It was destroyed during the Second World War, but was completely restored and worked until 2005.

Gardner’s Factory (1766). A world-renowned enterprise bought out in 1892, which specialized in the production of products with high artistic value. Now called “Porcelain Verbilok”.

Factory in Slavyansk (1892). As part of the Partnership, she worked until 1915 and produced faience, which is now relatively rare.

Plant and factory in the village of Pesochnoe (1884). Purchased in 1894. The main direction is products for the eastern countries. The main enterprise was renamed Pervomaisky Porcelain Factory, which ceased operations in 2012. The second factory produced crystal glassware.

The iconostasis from the Paris exhibition was a copy of the Novokhariton one. Created by the joint efforts of artist Krasnoshchekov, sculptor Anensky and grinder Ivanov. The painting is by the icon painter Pashkov.
The iconostasis from the Paris exhibition was a copy of the Novokhariton one. Created by the joint efforts of artist Krasnoshchekov, sculptor Anensky and grinder Ivanov. The painting is by the icon painter Pashkov.

Brands of Kuznetsovsky porcelain

The hallmarks of the Fellowship were numerous and varied. After acquiring another enterprise, in order not to lose its customers and reputation, they continued to use the old signs. Private labels were usually in the form of a circle or vignette. They were pressed into the wet mass and were drawn in blue or green. The marking of the following factories is especially common:

  • Dulevsky. At first, the hallmarks were applied with cobalt, later with blue paint over the glaze. For Asian products, an Arabic signature was added.
  • Riga. There is a wide variety of stamps, but almost always it is a complex image with many details and lush framing. It was applied overglaze with blue paint.
  • Auerbach. After 1887, the inscription was affixed: “MS Kuznetsov’s partnerships in Tver”.
  • Budyansky. The stamp was affixed with an overglaze method, green paint was used.
  • Gardner. Gardner’s famous red stamp was preserved along with the assortment.
Matvey Sidorovich Kuznetsov - the main porcelain manufacturer of Russia, lived in this house in 1874 - 1911 (Moscow, Prospekt Mira, 41)
Matvey Sidorovich Kuznetsov – the main porcelain manufacturer of Russia, lived in this house in 1874 – 1911 (Moscow, Prospekt Mira, 41)

In the later period, stamps were often affixed without specifying a specific place of release. The abbreviations “T. F. R. F. Buying Kuznetsov’s porcelain: where to look for antiques?

Collectors have been seriously interested in buying Kuznetsov’s porcelain since the 70s of the last century, when its historical value increased. One of the advantages of Kuznetsov’s products is a huge selection and a wide range of prices. Suitable items can be found even in conditions of limited funds or for a narrow collection of topics. There is no doubt that buying Kuznetsov’s porcelain is a profitable investment, since its value will only grow over time.

Vintage 19th century. Luxurious outlet. Kuznetsovsky porcelain, Vintage plates, Shchelkovo, Фото №1
Vintage 19th century. Luxurious outlet. Kuznetsovsky porcelain, Vintage plates, Shchelkovo, Фото №1

Kuznetsov's porcelain

The Kuznetsovs produced dishes of different styles for people of different incomes.
The Kuznetsovs produced dishes of different styles for people of different incomes.
Mikhail Vrubel, dish Sadko, 1899-1900.
Mikhail Vrubel, dish Sadko, 1899-1900.
Marking Kuznetsov with an eagle.
Marking Kuznetsov with an eagle.
Unpretentious for those times a plate for catering.
Unpretentious for those times a plate for catering.
This is how the marking of the Dulevo plant changed after the revolution. Since 1964 it has been a falcon bird.
This is how the marking of the Dulevo plant changed after the revolution. Since 1964 it has been a falcon bird.

Kuznetsov's porcelain

A DRYER WITH A STYLIZED TOWEL OF THE KUZNETSOVSK PORCELAIN FACTORY Russia, the beginning of the 20th century. Manufacturer Kuznetsovsky Porcelain Factory
A DRYER WITH A STYLIZED TOWEL OF THE KUZNETSOVSK PORCELAIN FACTORY Russia, the beginning of the 20th century. Manufacturer Kuznetsovsky Porcelain Factory
Kuznetsov's porcelain. OILER LAMB. Russia. End of the 19th century. Manufacturer Kuznetsovsky Porcelain Factory
OILER LAMB. Russia. End of the 19th century. Manufacturer Kuznetsovsky Porcelain Factory
Kuznetsov's porcelain. STATUETTE FOR LUNCH, PARTNERSHIP M. S. KUZNETSOV
STATUETTE FOR LUNCH, PARTNERSHIP M. S. KUZNETSOV
Kuznetsov's porcelain. SCULPTURAL COMPOSITION PLAYERS. Russia, Tver factory of M.S. Kuznetsov, 1880-1889
SCULPTURAL COMPOSITION PLAYERS. Russia, Tver factory of M.S. Kuznetsov, 1880-1889
Kuznetsov's porcelain. The altar, made by the Kuznetsovs for the church in Novokharitonovo, received the Grand Prix de France at the end of the nineteenth century. Only a copy of it has survived.
The altar, made by the Kuznetsovs for the church in Novokharitonovo, received the Grand Prix de France at the end of the nineteenth century. Only a copy of it has survived.
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