Posts tagged Otto Samuel Keibel
Important Silversmiths – Cum Wo

Cum wo is one of the first Chinese Export silversmiths known active in Hong Kong since 1860. He had a shop in Queen’s Road, where many silversmiths were based, but the superb quality of his works and the attention to details made him stand out among the others.

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Important Silversmiths – Tu Mao Xing

Tu Mao Xing mark is a quite a recent discovery: until 1980’s in fact he was wrongly identified as Kan Mao Xing and therefore not much is known about him. Tu Mao Xingis one of the first silversmiths operating in Kiukang between 1880 and 1930 and he is certainly one of the finest 19th Century Chinese silversmiths.

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Important Silversmiths – Cutshing

Cutshing is the trading name of a company based in Canton famous for retailing luxury items in silver, ivory, jade as well as high quality filigree and enamel items.

Although we don’t know the name or the names of the craftsmen working for the firm, according to Chinese Export Silver expert Adrien Von Ferscht it seems likely to be the result of a partnership between the American trader John Perkins, Cutshing and Houqua, the most powerful merchant from Hong Kong.

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Important Silversmiths – Tuck Chang

Active in the late 19th Century, Tuck Chang is undoubtedly the most popular retail silversmith of Shanghai, thus often referred to as the ‘Wang Hing of Shanghai’.

Like Wang Hing, the firm also traded in jade, ivory and jewellery.

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Important Silversmiths – Luen Wo

Luen Wo was a very important retail silversmith based in Shanghai, he also traded in jewellery, diamonds and embroideries. His artworks show a very high quality that only equals the standards of Wang Hing, in Canton.

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Important Silversmiths – Da Xing

Da Xing is a well-known silversmith active both in Canton and Singapore in the second half of 19th Century.

Famous for its fine craftsmanship, Da Xing produced silver for the wealthiest families in Malacca. He is in fact one of the few mainland Chinese silversmiths to produce Straits Chinese silver and to be active in Malaya and Singapore. Straits Chinese or Peranakan silver merges the Hindu-Islamic culture, visible in the shape and function of the items, with the Chinese tradition, evident in design and motifs.

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Important Silversmiths – Wang Hing

Probably the greatest and finest Chinese Export retailer, Wang Hing started trading in Canton soon after 1842 when, with the end of the First Opium War and the treaty of Nanking, China opened its ports to foreign merchants and Hong Kong became a British colony.

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Important Silversmiths – Grachev Brothers

The firm, producing gold and silver items was established in St. Petersburg in 1866 by Gavriil Petrovich Grachev, who had previously worked for Gasse.

At his death in 1873 his sons Mikhail, Simon and Grigory took over the company and renamed it into Grachev Brothers. Each brother used to mark the artworks he produced with his own mark, as the firm didn’t have a mark on its own.

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Important Silversmiths – Julius Alexander Rappoport

Of Jewish origins, Isaac Abramovich Rappoport was born in 1851 (although some sources say 1864) in Lithuania. After his apprenticeship in Berlin, he became a master in 1884 and moved to St. Petersburg, where he opened his own workshop and started working as head silversmith for Fabergé. A few years later he became a Christian and changed his name to Julius Alexander.

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Important Silversmiths – Nikolai Nemirov-Kolodkin

Nikolai Vasilyevich Nemirov was born in Vologda in 1819, into a merchant family. During his youth he lost both his parents and moved to Moscow in 1843.  In early 1850s he started working as a clerk for the silver merchant Ivan Ivanovich Kolodkin. Ivan Kolodkin didn’t have children and named Nikolai his heir, giving him his surname.

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Important Silversmiths – Wakeva

Stephan Wakeva was born in Finland in 1833. He went to St. Petersburg at the age of ten and was apprenticed as a silversmith. In 1856 he qualified as a master and founded his own workshop specialised in tableware, tea sets, tankards and samovars. Wakeva supplied the firm of Gustav Fabergé with silverware and from the late 1870s he had a contract with the company to work exclusively for it.

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Important Silversmiths – Pavel Ovchinnikov

Pavel Ovchinnikov (in Russian: Павел Акимович Овчинников) was one of the most famous Russian silversmiths of his time and an exceptional businessman.

He was born in Moscow province in 1830, from a family of modest origins: his father was a serf. Nevertheless Pavel was sent to study in Moscow by Prince Dimitri Volkonski, where he was apprenticed in a jewellery shop.

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Important Silversmiths – Feodor Ruckert

Friedrich Mauritz Ruckert was born in the south of Germany in 1840. At the age of fourteen he emigrated to Russia to work for the Yusupov family. There he was named Feodor Ivanovich Ruckert.

In 1886 he opened his own workshop in Moscow at 29 Vorontsovskaya Street and one year later he signed a contract with Fabergé. He never worked exclusively for the well known firm, but for thirty years he was the main supplier of cloisonné enamel for the Fabergé company.

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Important Silversmiths – Ivan Britzin

Ivan Khlebnikov (in Russian: Иван Хлебников)was born in St. Petersburg, son of a diamond and jewellery merchant. By 1865 he had his own jewellery firm, where he employed his sons Mikhail, Alexei and Nikolai.

In 1871 Ivan opened a factory in Moscow, employing around 200 artisans.

Within the premises of his factory he also opened a school of design and sculpture for thirty-five students.

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Important Silversmiths – Ivan Khlebnikov

Ivan Khlebnikov (in Russian: Иван Хлебников)was born in St. Petersburg, son of a diamond and jewellery merchant. By 1865 he had his own jewellery firm, where he employed his sons Mikhail, Alexei and Nikolai.

In 1871 Ivan opened a factory in Moscow, employing around 200 artisans.

Within the premises of his factory he also opened a school of design and sculpture for thirty-five students.

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Important Silversmiths – Erik August Kollin

After his apprenticeship in Finland, where he was born, Erik Kollin moved to St. Petersburg, where he registered as a goldsmith and started working for August Holmstrom.

In 1868 he qualified as master goldsmith and two years later he opened his own workshop. Kollin worked exclusively for Fabergé and from 1870 to 1886 he held the role of head workmaster for the company.

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Important Silversmiths – Nicholls & Plincke

Charles Nicholls and William Plincke (in russian: Николс и Плинке) were two English men trading in St. Petersburg who were granted Russian citizenship in 1804. In 1808 they qualified as members of the first guild and in 1815 they took over the business founded in 1876 by John Pickersgill. They initially traded under the name of William Plincke’s English Shop and from 1829 Nicholls & Plincke’s English Shop (1829–54).

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Important Silversmiths – Keibel

Otto Samuel Keibel was born in 1768 in Prussia. He moved to St. Petersburg very young, becoming a guild jeweller in 1797. In 1808 he was named member of the city council. At his death in 1809 his nephew Johann Wilhelm took over the business, which rapidly grew and started receiving commissions by the Imperial Court.

In 1825, Wilhelm was commissioned all the silver ornaments for the chapel of the Mikhailovsky Palace. In 1826 the firm created the crown for the coronation of Alexandra Feodorovna, wife of the Tsar Nicholas I and in 1836 received the Imperial Warrant.

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Important Silversmiths – August & Albert Holmstrom

August Holmstrom (in Russian: Август Хольмстром)was born in Helsinki in 1829, son of a bricklayer. After his apprenticeship in St. Petersburg, he became master in 1857 and bought his own workshop. The same year he was appointed headmaster for the House of Fabergé and started working exclusively for the company.

Holmstrom’s workshop was famous for its miniature copies of the Imperial regalia, exhibited at the Exhibition Universelle in Paris in 1900 and nowaday part of the Hermitage Museum collection.

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