Nevsky Chess Collection. Handmade by artist Leonid Golovko
"Creating Nevsky' chess collection"
Alexandre Dumas confessed that, "history for me is the nail on which I hang my paintings." Belarussian artist Leonid Golovko took a chessboard instead of a nail, on which he arranges his “stories”, in which Peter I, Mazepa, Ivan the Terrible, Stefan Batory, Kutuzov,Napoleon, Stalin and Hitler participate, Playing the famous plots on the board, the artist, Leonid, without regard to authority, allows the subjunctive mood to be included in his “stories”. Can it be different in chess?
This time Prince Alexander Nevsky and Pope Innocent IV, Orthodox Russia and Catholic Europe met on his board. It is clear that everyone has his own army and his entourage thus, the wife of Alexander Nevsky, the Polotsk Princess, Alexander Bryachislavna, and later the Princess of Novgorod, Vladimir and Kiev became the white Queen.
The artist entrusted her with the position of the strongest figure, not by chance, with constantly warring her husband and the principality, however in his absence, she ruled. It is the chronicles, which stated she ruled decisively with no reservations, providing the Prince with an unreliable rear in his absence. She also became the continuer of the Alexander Nevsky family, having given him three sons and a daughter, whom later became the Queen replacing her!
One of their war elephants was Metropolitan Kirill III. The spiritual ally of the Novgorod Prince, the metropolitan, as well as Alexander, considered tolerant Mongols to be a lesser evil for the Orthodox faith than Western Catholic expansion, and it was he, who secured the security label from Batu in 1252, which guarantees the inviolability of the Orthodox Church. Is it possible in the context of that era, to consider such a thing as nothing other than the preservation of national identity?
The Mongolian Khan Sartak, whose cavalry contributed a lot to the defeat of the Teutonic knights on Lake Peipsi, soon became another elephant of Alexander Nevsky, alas, it is an embarrassment recorded by official historical archives.
The white pawns are a mighty Russian army, moreover, each pawn has its own “face”, its own reflected character and the King of the blacks is the Pope of Rome, who has repeatedly tried to tempt, bribe, and by force compel the Novgorod Prince to renounce the Orthodox faith.
Here the black Queen is made to resemble, Batu Khan, whom the artist, Leonid also placed in the enemy's camp, rightly believing that both the Teutons and the Mongols were enemies of the Russians, and Alexander's “horde diplomacy” was a forced strategic move.
Black elephants - the master Andreas von Felfen, the one that built the pigs of the Teutonic Knights on the ice of Lake Peipsi, and the Swedish Earl Birger Magnusson, whom the Novgorod Prince “left a seal on his face with a sharp spear” in the Battle of Neva, the black pawns are the Teutonic Knights. In contrast to the white Russian army, the artist deliberately dressed them in topfhelmy helmets, turning them into a faceless black force.
In his works, Leonid Golovko creates not only historical portraits, but also his own fantasies, highlighting the most striking traits of the characters and eras; measuring them with your yardstick! Like a playwright, he collects fragments of an epoch by grains, distributes roles and sets priorities, excluding some characters and leaving out others. This is why the work on one particular collection, may take several years! after all, an era, must not just be thoroughly studied, but also embodied in the distinctive characters.
Production of the small porcelain sets, first in plaster is an extremely complex and painstaking proses, divided equally between despair, pure gratification and pride." It begins, with an accurate calculation of the density of the porcelain slip, the optimum temperature of the furnace, the choice of paints and varnishes, then drawing an artist impression and ending with the casting of the mould, then finishing off with multiple firing.
Moreover, if the calculations were all correct, if Leonid’s eye was true to his vision, if his hand did not tremble, then the number of these chess sets can be infinite! - That is when the Leonid’s vision and character comes to life, from the result of the picture, to the plaster image, then the masters dreams appears for all the world to admire and cherish for generations to come.
Leonid Golovsko’s collections are owned by the likes of Joseph Blatter, Anatoly Karpov, Alexander Lukashenko, Nursultan Nazarbayev, Dmitry Medvedev and Viktor Chernomyrdin, to name but a few! These are all well-known individuals in their own right; it is very likely that the porcelain chess characters of Alexander Nevsky collections, will enable any new owner to experience history in this ancient game of Chess, “Filled With the Energy of Eternal Drama”
Chess Pieces: Porcelain, Gold Gilding and Platinum.