First official reference of Palekh. In his last will Russian Tsar Ivan the Terrible orders to grant the village to his son.
The first Tsar of the Romanov Dynasty, Mikhail Fedorovich, grants Palekh to the ancient noble family of Buturlin for their participation in the liberation of Moscow from the Poles.
By XVII century, Palekh becomes prosperous town, while local peasants receive high recognition and glory of skillful icon painters.
In 1723, two peasant-painters ask permission to trade their icons in Saint Petersburg, the young capital of the Russian Empire built by the first Russian Emperor Peter the Great.
Commissioning of the Holy Cross Temple, which becomes possible due to financial support and contributions of parishioners during twelve years. Painted and lavishly decorated by local masters. Since XVIII century Palekh remains the icon-painting center based on traditions of Russian painting school of XV-XVII centuries.
Lev Sofonov opens the first icon-painting workshop, which soon gains notable customers, among whom members of the imperial family, well-to-do merchants and clergy.
By the end of the XIX century, there are ten major workshops in Palekh.
The Belousov brothers successfully complete the royal commission for mural in the Palace of the Facets of the Moscow Kremlin. Palekh masters decorate the Uspenskiy Cathedral in Vladimir, the Trinity-Sergius Lavra, the Ipatiev Cathedral in Kostroma, the Novodevichiy Monastery in Moscow, and the Annunciation Cathedral of the Moscow Kremlin.
After the October revolution of 1917 iconography in Russia falls under prohibition, but the skill is carefully preserved.
Hereditary iconographers I. Golikov, I. Bakanov, A. Zubkov, I. Zubkov, A. Kotuhin, V. Kotuhin and I. Markichev establish an Artel on December 4, 1924 to produce lacquer boxes made of papier-mache. Creation of high quality artistic works based on ancient icon-painting traditions becomes the main aspiration of the Palekh Artel.
Masterpieces of Palekh artists are honored the right to represent Soviet art at the major international exhibitions in Venice, Paris, Milano, and in New York. During the first year of its existence, Artel celebrates a triumphal victory at the international art exhibition in Venice. In 1925, it receives the Grand Prix at the Industrial Exhibition in Paris.
Maxim Gorky, the honorary member of the Palekh Artel, helps to establish State Museum of Palekh Art, and a year later – the Palekh Art School, which bears his name.
Emergence of new generation of young talented masters of who give rise to resurgent interest in Palekh arts. Young artists turn to contemporary topics and space themes. Yuri Gagarin is depicted as national epic hero conquering cosmos.
In the 70-80's, the Palekh miniature workshops become the most successful organization in the system of the Artists' Union of the USSR. More than 90% of lacquer miniature sell abroad.
Palekh becomes a hallmark of the USSR. In addition to famous lacquered boxes and panels, artists engage in monumental projects for decorative design of palaces, schools, resorts, theaters, Russian embassies abroad.
The legacy of ancient Russian traditions and impeccable quality of Palekh masters provide solid foundation, which help to bring this art to the present day. DUHANIN workshop and its team of artists aspire to be worthy successors of artistic heritage left by previous generations