Tea and coffee set

ARTIST / MAKER: Carl Gustav Simonsson (maker)
DATE: 1857 (made)
PLACE: St Petersburg (made)

The silversmith and master craftsman who produced this set, Carl Gustav Simonsson (1825-1870), is thought to have been inspired by a similar looking tea service produced by Carl Johann Tegelsten for the third son of Tsar Nicholas I, Nikolai Nikolaevich, in 1852. Both sets are styled with naturalistic branches with floral and foliate decoration, characteristic of the Rococo Revival style originating in France and popular in mid 19th century Russia. The Great Exhibition held in London in 1851 marked a high point of the Rococo Revival, remaining popular in England, France and Russia until the 1870s.

Carl Gustav Simonsson was born in Stockholm and came to St. Petersburg in 1844 where he completed his training. Attaining the status of master craftsman in 1854, he is also thought to have worked for Gustav Fabergé who founded the world renowned jewellery firm in 1842.