Russian dolls: Ringo pays tribute to the matryoshka in 'Matrena de Ural'

The Russian doll - known as a matryoshka - is one of the most famous symbols of the country. This toy, designed in the 1890s by artist Sergey Malyutin, is one of the most popular souvenirs bought by visitors to Russia. Remaining true to the country'a aesthetics and its philosophy, jewellery brand Ringo presents a new pendant collection: 'Matrena de Ural' - steeped in the national identity which this iconic figure represents.

In 2018, Ringo celebrated a significant milestone: its 25th anniversary. To mark it, the brand released its first matryoshka pendant from the 'Matrena de Ural' collection, made with an emerald crystal, rubies and diamonds. So far, five completely stylistically different varieties of matryoshka have been created by the brand, with each Ringo designer taking a unique approach to the look of these jewels.

“'Matrena de Ural' has disrupted the sphere of jewellery design, shattering all stereotypes, and paying tribute to Russian history. If you plan to give an original gift - which won’t simply be hidden away in a jewellery box - know that gifting a matryoshka will no longer be clichéd!” Assures Andrey Yalunin, owner of Ringo.

The design of the first matryoshka from this collection - 'Russian Symbols' - was developed by Sergey Korolyov, who previously created the gorgeous objet d’art pendant 'Espacio de Tiempo'. At the heart of the first 'Matrena de Ural' pendant is an extraordinary 18.04 carat emerald crystal originating from the Malyshev mines in the Ural mountains in Russia. This rotating green beryl is accompanied by diamonds and richly coloured rubies that crown a singular sculpture made of white and rose gold.

Sergey Korolyov's 'Symbols of Russia' pendant from Ringo's 'Matrena de Ural' collection with 18.04 carat Ural Mountain emerald, rubies and diamonds in white and rose gold

Once your first impressions subside, you are able to study the pendant further: when it comes to manufacturing jewellery art, Ringo’s creations always have more than one symbol or meaning. Gold outlines the widely familiar silhouette of the matryoshka, and on top is a five-pointed star made of brilliant cut rubies; reminiscent of both the Kremlin’s towers and the star found atop Christmas trees – acknowledging the most important family holiday.

Sergey Korolyov's 'Symbols of Russia' pendant from Ringo's 'Matrena de Ural' collection with 18.04 carat Ural Mountain emerald, rubies and diamonds in white and rose gold

The 'Russian Princesses' collection - created by Alyona Russu - refers to the mysterious nature of the Russian soul. The white gold represents the long and severe - but stunning - Russian winter, while the gemstones and green embellishments symbolise the warmth and flora that characterise the short Russian summer. The plump silhouette signifies fertility and motherhood, and the elegant ornamentation of emeralds, rubies, blue sapphires and colourless diamonds reflect Russia’s distinctive culture. The way in which the matryoshka is dressed fascinating, as is her rich 'inner world'; consisting of an exceptional emerald weighing a little more than 19 carats, placed inside the gold structure. This design is intended not only to display the feature gem to full effect, but also to illustrate the name of the pendant: 'The Sanctuary of the Russian Soul'.

Alyona Russu's 'Russian Princess' pendant from Ringo's 'Matrena de Ural' collection with more than 19 carats of emerald, and accenting rubies, sapphires and diamonds in white gold

The matryoshka with the most minimalist design is the 'Diamond Avant-Garde', from the 'Crystal' collection by Egor Dunin, and is a tribute both to the beginning of the 20th century and the birth of the revolutionary period in Russian history. The piece was designed to remind the world of the roots of a progressive phenomenon within the most traditional niche of the jewellery market: jewellery made of gold and diamonds. When you try to twist this pendant, you can see triangular mirrors of polished gold: a nod to traditional Russian carving methods. “This pendant embraces a paradoxical respect for both the heritage of national artistic practice and the dynamic rhythm of modern life,” Egor Dunin tells me.

Maksim Basmanov’s matryoshka - 'In all its Glory' - is a continuation of the 'Lucia' collection, which translates to “bright” in Latin. At first glance, it is as if the designer was inspired by transparent dew drops and moonlight dancing on the leaves of trees. His white gold design is akin to a carpet of petals against which blue sapphire flowers sparkle and glisten. This pendant manages to convey the elusive duality of jewellery’s magic: the austere and disciplined perfection of precious stones, and metal designed to illustrate the charm of wildlife and nature - both their beauty and their immediacy.

Maksim Basmanov's 'In all its Glory' pendant from Ringo's 'Matrena de Ural' collection with sapphires in white gold

Last but by no means least, let us take a look at the matryoshka dubbed 'Every Era has its Art' by Sergey Korolyov from the 'Secession' line. This pendant was born out of the linguistic device of metaphor - demonstrating the process behind the formation of the unique Russian character through abstract shapes and associations for the viewer. The central stone is an 18.56 carat fancy cut emerald complemented by a 1.28 carat orange sapphire and champagne coloured diamonds. Their colours smoothly blend into the yellow gold, allowing your imagination to paint new pictures every time you look at them.

All of the matryoshkas are original and one of a kind, are sold both separately or as a set, and available directly at any Ringo boutique of your choice.

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