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Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution

Updated: Nov 22, 2021

Imperial Easter Eggs galore await you at the V&A's dazzling new winter show. Quite a surprise to find some Faberge hand grenadés too!

Showcasing over 200 gleaming objects from his iconic Easter Eggs to sparking regal tiaras, delicate botanical studies, diamond cigarette cases, stone animals and silver bowls there's heaps on display for little eyes to peer at.

With three main exhibition halls the show begins by telling the story of Carl Fabergés hugely important patronage to the ill-fated Romanov family exploring his role as the official goldsmith to the Imperial family. Look out for the dazzling aquamarine and diamond tiara – a token of love from Frederick Francis IV, Grand Duke of Mecklenburg-Schwerin to his bride Princess Alexandra of Hanover on their wedding day.

The second section delves into the little-know history of Faberge's London branch and his hugely glamerous Edwardian clientele. Opening in 1903 British royalty, aristocrats, Maharajas and exiled Russian Dukes flocked to his shop to snap up his opulent creations.

The exhibition then moves towards the devastating impact of the Great War and the Russian Revolution on Faberges business. The most fascinating display for us came in the form of two rather gritty looking hand grenades built in the Faberge workshops in support of the Russian war effort. From 1914 onwards, the workshops supplied them in huge quantities. In 1916 Faberge noted an order for 6.5 million grenade parts.

Faberge Hand Grenades, 1914

The finale to this glittering exhibition is a shimmering room packed with his iconic Imperial Easter Eggs, the most displayed all together for over 25 years. This kaleidoscopic display of 15 famous treasures will literally stop you in your tracks. Look out for the largest Imperial Egg, the Moscow Kremlin Egg, the egg found by a scrap dealer in 2011, the Third Imperal Egg, and the stunning Peacock Egg.

Romance, glamour, opulence and tragedy all wrapped up in hundreds of teeny tiny gleaming treasures. What's not to love.

By Julia Colls, 18 November 2021


Fabergé in London: Romance to Revolution

Opens 20 Nov to 8 May

Tickets from £18, U12s free, best booking availability in Jan

Click here to book.


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