Kholui Miniature

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Kholui Miniature


a type of Russian folk miniature painting. Kholui miniatures are done in tempera on lacquered papiermâché articles, including small decorative boxes. The crafting of Kholui miniatures originated in 1932 in the settlement of Kholui, Ivanovo Oblast, replacing a local icon-painting trade known since the 16th century. The miniatures were originally made at a branch of the Mstera Proletarskoe Iskusstvo Artel. The independent Kholui Artel was founded in 1934; it was renamed the Kholui Factory of Lacquered Miniatures in 1960.

The craftsmen of Kholui borrowed the techniques of making articles from papier-mâché from the masters of Fedoskino, as the craftsmen of Palekh and Mstera had done earlier. Kholui miniatures mainly depict historical, folkloric, literary, and contemporary subjects, as well as still lifes and landscapes. They are notable for the solid, three-dimensional quality of their subjects and their enlarged compositional details. The decorative painting style is based on the contrast of warm and cold tones.

Prominent masters of Kholui miniatures include S. A. Mokin, V. D. Puzanov, K. V. Kosterin, N. I. Baburin, V. A. Belov, B. I. Kiselev, and N. N. Denisov.


[Rozova, L. K.] Iskusstvo kholuiskoi miniaturnoi zhivopisi. [Album.] Leningrad, 1970.
Kukuliev, U. A., and V. V. Starikov. Esl’ takoe seto . . . . Yaroslavl, 1973.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.