Palekh is the name of a tiny Russian village situated about 250 miles from Moscow.

The artform originating in this village is also called palekh and is one of the most famous Russian crafts in existence. Palekh artists create very intricate miniature drawings on black-lacquered art pieces resembling medium size jewelry boxes or chests. Most boxes are either square or oval in shape and have oil-painted pictures all around the sides as well as the top lid. Palekh brooches are also common.

Majority of palekh artwork features heroes of Russian folklore and is incredibly detailed considering the size. Some smaller drawings are made using magnifying glass. The magnifying glass is perhaps the most technologically advanced tool in artist's inventory. Naturally everything palekh is hand-crafted including most of the tools used in production.

Traditionally very lively and bright colors are used to create the image which stands out even more on black background. Accidental mistakes are usually fatal for the piece where precision is the key. It can take several years to complete larger chests, so if you are doing this for a living you better have a steady hand.

All palekh art is very consistent stylistically. Once you see one of the works, you can easily identify any other work as palekh art just from the technique and standard elements used in all paintings.