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Tradestone Gallery

Tradestone Gallery
803 Light Street
Baltimore, MD 21230

Telephone: 443-602-9899
Fax: 425-940-9232

Welcome to our web site! My name is Andrew Stonebarger, owner of Tradestone Gallery (Tradestone International). It's pleasure to have you here. The following will give you a brief background on our company, some things to keep in mind about this site, and our pledge to you.

Until early 1995, I had worked for 10 years as a government employee here in the Baltimore area. Before deciding to leave my job, I had an opportunity to visit Moscow where I met my wife Tatyana (pictured with me below from our honeymoon) and where I was first exposed to the world of Russian lacquer art at one of the larger open-air art markets. I purchased several boxes because I thought they were quite beautiful, but had no idea then that they would become a significant part of my life.

Andrew and Tatyana Stonebarger
Andrew and Tatyana Stonebarger
Tradestone Gallery

As the boxes sat on a shelf in my living room, their beauty and craftsmanship impressed me just a little bit more every day. Friends would come over and be drawn to them by their unique look and vibrant colors. Then, upon viewing them closer, they would be amazed by the intricacy in their designs.

In order to learn more about this fascinating art, I began to read various books on the subject, including the Russian fairy tales which form the themes for so many lacquer box drawings. But it wasn't until I realized that most Americans don't know, or understand, this art that I decided to change my way of life. The boxes were simply too beautiful to be known by so few. So I ended my service in the government, started Tradestone International, traveled to Russia again, and established ties with some of the leaders in Russian lacquer art. (Fortunately, finding the right connections was made easier by the fact that I can speak Russian, a feat which I am immensely proud of because it took me FOREVER to learn it!)

In early spring 1996, I decided to create the first web site devoted to this art, even though I knew showing the boxes on the internet would not be doing them justice. The monitor screen, after all, couldn't faithfully capture the incredible details on some of the drawings. But after placing a few sample pictures of boxes on my monitor, I found that other elements of the drawings, like form, balance, color and the overall spirit, could still come through on the screen. And in this age where technology seems to leapfrog forward almost every week, I'm sure the quality of the images will improve, as well.

Putting the boxes on-line is not without its advantages. One major advantage is that we are able to continually rotate our works, bringing in new acquisitions at every opportunity. In contrast, some dealers have been working from the same catalog for many years. And there is no waiting as a box makes a sometimes unpredictable journey from Russia to America. Everything we offer on-line is here, ready to be delivered to you.

Before closing, let me just say that I hope you get a chance to read some of the Russian fairy tales presented in this web site. For ease of reading, most are not word-for-word translations. The one exception is "The Tale of the Golden Cockerel", which is an original translation of the poem by Aleksander Pushkin. If you're pressed for time, perhaps read "The Tale of the Dead Princess" or "The Snow Maiden". They're pretty short.

Once again, thank you for visiting our site. I hope you come back often to see the new works as they come in. Tatyana and I would also like to invite you to our unique Tradestone Gallery, also located at 803 Light Street, in Baltimore, MD. which features a full selection of Russia arts and crafts.

If you are thinking of purchasing a box on-line or in our store, I can promise you this -- you simply won't find better values than what we are offering here. I give you my word and back it up with a full 100% money back guarantee. Lacquer boxes, by the way, are a great alternative to jewelry when a truly exquisite gift is called for. And we'll put your order in a nice cotton-filled box for the proper presentation of your gift. Much of our business is selling to repeat customers so we want you to be completely satisfied with your purchase. If you are not, please return it for a complete refund, no questions asked.

Travelling to Baltimore or Washington, DC? Come visit our gallery.

For friendly assistance, call 443-602-9899.

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