Nicholas Krasnoff as the symbol of unity between two countries… Joint stamp issue presented by Malta and Russian Post

May 24th, 2016 hurries to inform our readers that Malta and Russian Post will celebrate their respective countries' long-standing relations by a joint stamp issue. The two nations enjoy diplomatic representation with a Maltese embassy in Moscow and an embassy of Russia in San Gwann as well as a cultural centre in Valletta.

The common theme chosen for this stamp issue relates to two paintings by Russian artist Nicholas Krassnoff.

The first stamp depicts the Dulber Palace in Crimea, which is considered an architectural gem of Ukraine. It's fabulous snow-white asymmetric structure with silver cupolas and elegant turrets noticeably stand out against a background of the Crimean mountains. The design of the palace is based on sketches by Prince Nikolayevich who, due to poor health, often travelled to the Middle East upon doctors' advice. He was inspired by the architecture he encountered on his travels and collected sketches of them in a scrapbook. The painting on this stamp can be found in the Yalta Historical and Literature Museum.

The painting on the second stamp entitled 'View from Vittoriosa Gate', presents an idyllic view of the Birgu waterfront which also serves as a pathway to the ancient Fort St. Angelo. Birgu is a very old locality with its origins reaching back to medieval times. Prior to the establishment of Valletta as capital city of Malta, military powers seeking to rule the Maltese Islands would need to obtain control of Birgu due to its significant position in the Grand Harbour.

The gate in this painting was built during the British occupation in Malta so as to provide access to St. Angelo and the church. The painting also features two women in Malta's traditional costume ‒ the Ghonnella or Faldetta.