Princess Serafina Astafieva
Bronze bust circa 1927; Monogrammed EH and marked by the foundry, 'F Barbedienne, Paris'.
7 x 3 inches
The artist, and thence by descent to Vivienne and Arnold Haskell
Princess Serafina, who posed Nefertiti-like for this little bronze of 1927, was a Russian dancer. In 1916 she opened a dance school at the Pheasantry in Chelsea which established a direct link between the Diaghilev ballet and British dancers in the early 20th century. One of her pupils was the young Dame Alicia Markova, who went on to join the Ballets Russes in 1924 and had her lessons sponsored by Emmy Haskell and her son Arnold (who married Markova’s younger sister Vivienne), author of Balletomania.