A.K. Rudanovsky opened his first antique boutique in 1905 at Nevskiy Avenue 62, Central Petrograd (St Petersburg).
Mr Rudanovsky became close friend and partner with Agathon Faberge, the son of famous Imperial jeweller to the Russian Tsars Karl Faberge.
Carl Faberge, and the Faberge Family were sponsored by the Russian Imperial Family.
A.K Rudanovsky, together with Agathon Faberge, who wasthe wealthiest son of Carl Faberge took advantage of Faberge connections to the Imperial Family, and quickly became the largest private dealers in Art, Antiques and Jewellery in Russia. The dacha of Agathon Faberge was commonly referred to as “ The small Hermitage”.
With the onset of the Communist Revolution in 1917, the Russian Art and financial community went into panic mode, Aristocrats flocked to the partners A.К. Rudanovsky and Agathon Faberge to convert their Art and antiques to cash. Rudanovsky and Faberge, rapidly accumulated one of the finest art and antique collections in Russia and Europe. Rudanovsky and Faberge immediately donated large portions of this newly acquired art to museums, and mainly the Hermitage and the rest was hidden with the aim of protect for future generations at Agathons dacha.
At the beginning of the revolution the communists had little interest in art and antiques, since they had little appreciation of art, did not understand it and couldn’t define it’s real value. That became a real issue when they tried to deal with foreign buyers and participate at the auctions abroad. At the actions Russian aristocrats refugees were easily recognizing art that is belong to them and communists had difficulties with official sale.
Maxim Gorky was a famous Russian writer, who supported the revolution. Gorky’s wife Maria Fyodorovna Andreyeva was highly addicted to art, antiques and jewellery.
At his wife’s insistence Gorky convinced the communists to set up a special art commission of experts, and to begin confiscating art, antiques, jewellery etc from the aristocrats.
Gorky and the communists asked A.K Rudanovsky and Agathon Faberge to head up this new special art commission, and to donate their personal art collections to the communists. Rudanovsky and Faberge agree to lead a commission but refused to share any of their collections. When they began to work with confiscated antiques Warehouses were filled with sacks of confiscated jewelry.Then communists decided to crush all collected master peaces and sell separately gold and diamonds. A.K.Rudanovsky and Agaphon Faberge almost blinded by the shine of diamonds when they assessed itch peace. After a while they were thrown into jail for falsification of prices. For Bolsheviks everything they did was overpriced.Rudanovsky was in jail for few weeks and Faberge for one year.The communists made the tactical mistake of not plundering the houses of Rudanovsky and Faberge before they released Rudanovsky from Jail. Once Rudanovsky was realeased from Jail, he immediately collected the most valuable pieces from both his own house and the house of Agathon Faberge, and gradually through fellow diplomats transported it to Finland, pending the release of his friend Faberge from prison.
Upon the release of Faberge from prison. A.K. Rudanovsky and Faberge collected their easily transportable valuables and on December night in 1927 fled over the frozen Gulf to Finland. Rudanovsky carried a large collection of diamonds, paintings and a collection of 34 Faberge flowers, Faberge who was a renowned philatelist managed to include his world famous stamp collection and paintings. Red Guards, fired at the fugitives, only wounding Agathon.
According to KGB official files, A.K. Rudanovsky was suspected to be in possession of the famous “Sancy Diamond” at the time of the revolution. The Bolsheviks tried but failed to confiscate this diamond by imprisoning Rudanovsky for two weeks. Rudanovsky had apparently already old this “SancyDiamond” to the English Lord Astor before the revolution.