The Matriochkas At The Tempera

Matriochkas(the nesting dolls) are represented as symbols of Russian craftsmanship. It also symbolizes the Russian animals, historical characters, etc. Crafting of Matriochkas requires a lot of effort, mastery, and dedication as it includes 3 to 10 subjects that fit into each other. Painting all the dolls of matryoshkas is one of the toughest and crucial steps. Multiple types of paints are used for making matriochkas like gouache, watercolor, oil painting, acrylic, etc. One of the strange yet effective techniques is the tempera and in this, painting is done using an egg.

 

What is tempera?

Tempera is a commonly used paint type of millennia; Even from ancient times, evidence of usage of tempera has been found especially in Egyptian and Byzantine civilization, as well as in medieval Europe. In this process, color pigments are well mixed with eggs and then blended with vinegar, water, white wine, and scented oils. For proper color texture, egg yolk is used but the white part of the egg can also be used to get the required color gradients. As the egg is usually sticky in dry form, so it adds durability to the Russian dolls.

Benefits of tempera for painting matryoshka

The top characteristic of the tempera is its durability of the temperature and its water resistance. Also, it can carry out very precise shades and texture of the color rendering. The fineness provided to the gradients is used to paint the facial features of the nesting dolls to furnish them with a unique and catchy personality. Also, its temperature demands a long drying time and meanwhile, it allows the artist to add detailing to the painting or add new figures during the drying time. In addition, the temperature requires a relatively long drying time; this allows, if necessary, to rework the details of the painting, or to add new shades during drying.

How are matriochkas crafted in tempera?

In the initial years. gouache was used for painting Matriochkas. Over the years, the painting work was diversified by other techniques to add further detailing and smooth shades. Painters started using several painting techniques and each technique is used for particular elements like background, figures, faces, clothing, etc. Before painting, the matryoshka is first crafted by the woodturner and then dolls created from wood are dried and coating of oil is done to ensure its longevity and performance in humid conditions. After this process, the painter starts the work and begins with working from the bottom of the matriochkas. The bottom is left a bit raw to exhibit the beauty of the wood. As we know that tempera paint can’t be stored for longer durations, that’s why it is prepared a few hours before the time of its application. This is why the matriochkas painted in tempera are a true art piece.