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The first International Lace festival VITA LACE

One of the most massive and spectacular events of 2011 summer was the first Intarnational Lace festival VITA LACE which was being held in Vologda within the framework of the first International Flax festival from 23 to 25 June.

The initiative of Vologda region governor V.E.Pozgalev to conduct in Vologda the first International Lace festival was encouraged by the Russian Federation President D.A.Medvedev and branch ministries of the Russian Federation.

Vyacheslav Evgenievitch Pozgalev also proposed to work out a name for the new festival. The Vologda region department of culture and protecton of cultural heritage objects got more than two hundred name options. It’s rather pleasant that not only Vologda citizens took part in the contest but also citizens of other Russian regions and Ukrainian citizens as well. Finally five names were chosen: «Vologda», «Sophia», «Patterns without limits», «Vita lace», «Flax threat»/ «Linea».

During the voting the majority of the festival organization committee gave their voices for «Vita lace», this name was proposed by Vologda culture preserve museum. This name reflects the international core of the festival better than other ones, it corresponds with its goals and tasks. The word vita is taken from latin which means life, biography. The word lace is taken from English. Thus, this name sounds like Living Lace.

The new festival is to help the preservation and further effective development of the unique art craft as well as to tighten the bonds of Vologda and other Russian and world lace centers.
The Vologda region government and Vologda city authorities took a decision to combine the dates of the International Lace festival «Vita lace», of the International Flax festival and the Town Day – the 864 Vologda anniversary.

The International Flax festival and the International Lace festival «Vita lace» opening ceremony in Kremlin square turned into a spectacular holiday devoted to its Majesty Flax. People could see on the stage a large-scale theatrical and choreographic performance telling about Russian to have become the flax state 455years ago which had been lasting for more than 300 years. The important guests of the holiday were Valentin Yudashkin and Vyacheslav Zaitsev. The congregated in the square people were the first to see Vyacheslav Zaitsev’s flax collection.

The festival had many surprises, the most spectacular one was the setting of a new record – «the most mass-scale lace-making». 24 June in Vologda city center there was unprecedented campaign: Kremlin square turned into a lace district was occupied by 570 lace-makers from 25 regions of Vologda Oblast, Vologda and Cherepoves, 18 Russian regions and 8 foreign countries: Australia, Bulgaria, Croatia, France, Ireland, Canada, Poland and Slovenia.

The lace masters were set in the shape of a snow-flake, a favorite lace pattern. During two hours the Kremlin square was filled by a fairy sound of bobbins.

The youngest participant of the campaign was 3-year-old Ljuba Tihomirova from Vasilievskoye village, Vologda region- she came here with two other lace-makers – her mother and grandmother. The most experienced participant was 74-year-old Vologda citizen Galina Pavlovna Suslova, who has been making laces for more than 50 years. The number of the participants also included five men.

The festival was visited by Svetlana Medvedeva, the President’s wife. Svetlana Vladimirovna accompanied by Russian fashion expert Valentin Yudashkin and Vologda Oblast governor Vjacheslav Pozgalev visited the Museum of Lace, the only one of a kind in Russia opened in November 2010. The first lady talked with the campaign participants and estimated how hard their job is. As a gift from Nina Gavrikova, Sokol lace-maker Svetlana Vladimirovna has got a lace mantlet.

According to the Russian records book a special committee was created and experts were invited to watch the record and the conditions in which it was being held. The committee included Nikolai Tihomirov, Vologda district legislative assembly chairman, Alexander Leshukov, Vologda State Pedagogical University chancellor, Sergei Pastuhov, the chief federal inspector in Vologda district, Vladimir Korbakov, Russian national artist, a notary Marina Prohorova. The campaign was being registered by two cameras. All the necessary papers including videos of Vologda TV companies and newspaper materials were sent by the the Museum of lace authorities to Moscow.

11 July 2011 after the consideration of Vologda application for a new Russian record «the most mass-scale lace-making», editorial board of Russian Records book admitted it to satisfy the rules and unanimously voted for this application to be an official national record! The Department of culture and preservation of cultural heritage objects of Vologda district, one of the organizers of the «the most mass-scale lace-making» was informed about it by the president of the «Pari Agensy» Alexander Svistunov.

The number of the events of the International lace festival included: the final stage of the Silver bobbin contest, the demonstration of the clothes collection made by the winners of the contest Flax as one of the Russian goods , interregional display of the works of art and craft schools’ students covered by the topic Laces , exhibition Lace Maze, photo exhibition Vologda, a lace city, as well as round tables and concerts in Kremlin square.

Due to initiative of Vjacheslav Pozgalev within the framework of the first International festival «Vita Lace» there was announced a contest to find a name for the Sofia Davidova prize. Sofia Alexandrovna Davidova was at the head of the handicraft lacemaking and women professional education in Russia. The award ceremony of the prize winners – JSC Lace Company Snowflake, LLC Vologda lace-maker, the governor college of folk crafts was being held during the celebration of Vologda Town Day.

The lace festival along with a theatrical festival Voices of history, Young European Film Festival VOICES, festival of poetry and music Rubtsov’s autumn will become a trademark of cultural projects of Vologda land which is lawfully considered one of the main lace-making centers in Russia. The second festival «VITA LACE» will be held in Vologda in 2014. See you soon, festival!