Monday, November 18, 2013

"The North" Polar Bear Topped Perfume Bottle

The mystery has been solved -- you've seen the frosted glass perfume bottle with the polar bear on top right? But never knew its knew it might have been Russian all along and yes, you were right, it is a Russian perfume bottle.

photo from ebay

The perfume's name is called Северный which means "The North" and it is classified as a hesperidic floral chypre fragrance that was created by Vitkovskaya A.P. for Novaya Zarya and launched in 1939.

Info from:

"Original design cologne "North" bottle invented Kazimir Malevich. Before the revolution faces iceberg were concave inside the bottle, and in the post-revolutionary time they were made convex. Cologne lasted 90 years (1911-1991). Left - design Malevich (perfume 1930 issue), right - later design (1990)."

New York Times, 1963:
"On Sale at GUM, Moscow's Super Shop Soviet Scents. One perfume called "The North" comes in a bottle that looks like a polar bear sitting on an iceberg; another,"The Kremlin," has a container with a red star.."

The other perfume named in the article is Кремль, "The Kremlin."

Main Department Store or GUM (ГУМ, pronounced as goom, in full Главный Универсальный Магазин, Glavnyi Universalnyi Magazin) is a modern name for the main department store in many cities of the former Soviet Union, known as State Department Store Государственный Универсальный Магазин, Gosudarstvennyi Universalnyi Magazin) in the Soviet times. Similar-named stores were in the some Soviet republics and post-Soviet states.

The most famous GUM is a large store in Kitai-gorod of Moscow, facing Red Square. It is actually a shopping mall. Prior to the 1920s the place was known as the Upper Trading Rows (Верхние торговые ряды). After reopening as a department store in 1953, the GUM became one of the few stores in the Soviet Union that was not plagued by shortages of consumer goods, and the queues to purchase anything were long, often extending all across Red Square.

1 comment:

  1. 2015, marked the 100th anniversary of the world famous painting " Black Square " by the great Russian Avant-garde and Suprematist artist Kazimir Malevich.

    Before the "Black Square" by Malevich designed the perfume bottle for eau de cologne "Severny" (the Northern in English), which was produced since 1911 in the Imperial Russia by perfumery company Brocard & Co., and then from 1921-1922 until mid-1990th in the Soviet Union and the Russian Federation by perfume factory "Novaya Zarya".

    The bottle of "Severny" cologne – glass iceberg with a polar bear on the top – ensured the scent's unprecedented popularity throughout almost all of 20th Century.

    The original Malevich-designed bottle for "Severny" with its sparkling play of craquelure and expressive sculptural form, is truly a museum piece (Dr. Aleksandra Shatskikh. "BOTTLING A DREAM. A COLOGNE BOTTLE BY MALEVICH", ARTKHRONIKA magazine, #5-6, pages 100-110, Moscow, Russia, Autumn-Winter 2008).

    If you are interested in this topic and you wish to submit an article or information message, more detailed information you will found on the website or go to direct link:


All comments will be subject to approval by a moderator. Comments may fail to be approved or may be edited if the moderator deems that they:
contain unsolicited advertisements ("spam")
are unrelated to the subject matter of the post or of subsequent approved comments
contain personal attacks or abusive/gratuitously offensive language

International Perfume Bottle Association

IPBA Annual Convention

Annual IPBA Perfume Bottles Auction

Annual IPBA Perfume Bottles Auction