RANGELEY – Traditional Russian artist and lecturer Marina Forbes will be at the Rangeley Public Library on Tuesday, Aug. 1 and Wednesday, Aug. 2. On Tuesday evening, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., Forbes will be giving a fully illustrated interactive talk featuring the history of Matryoshka nested doll making in Russia.
Using a fully illustrated show and numerous exhibits, including examples of her own work and from her extensive collection, Forbes will examine the tapestry of the rich folk tradition and symbolism of the doll’s appearance and the interesting link between doll making and other traditional Russian art forms. There will be a quick stop at the 1900 World Fair in Paris that made Russian nested dolls and Faberge eggs famous, followed by an exciting illustrated tour of a working doll-making factory in rural Russia, depicting the various stages in the doll making process. The presentation will conclude with a glorious show of hundreds of examples of the finest Matryoshka artwork available in Russia.
On Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., Forbes will offer a hands-on workshop on painting Matryoshka wooden nested dolls. Following a 30-minute presentation, workshop participants will have the opportunity to paint their own nested dolls. The workshop is open to adults, teens, and families with children ages 6 and up. It is a great opportunity for adults and families to work together and learn about Russian crafts and culture. Participants will hear the story of the Matryoshka doll and will learn about her traditional Russian dress and customs. Traditional Russian painting techniques and floral berry designs are also introduced. The goal is to produce a finished piece of Russian folk art on wood. Students can work on 7-piece, 5-piece, 3-piece or 1-piece Matryoshka sets. Throughout the workshop, students will be listening to traditional Russian music, and, during a brief break from the painting, there will be a demonstration of a few steps from a traditional Russian “matryoshka dance.”
The Tuesday evening program is free, but students must purchase a set of pre-designed dolls in order to participate in the Wednesday workshop. The following options of pre-designed dolls are available: 1-piece pre-designed doll $10, $13, $15, $18, $35; 2-piece pre-designed doll $35, 3-piece pre-designed doll $45, 4-piece pre-designed doll $50, and 5-piece pre-designed doll $55. Acrylic paints and brushes will be provided. Families are encouraged to work together on the multi-piece sets. There is space for up to 50 participants, on a first-come, first-serve basis. Those interested in participating are asked to stop by or call the library to sign up.