OK guys, seeing as its a news blackout at the moment, I'm casting the net a bit wider! Earlier this year, a number of Russian and international celebrities were invited to paint porcelain tiger cubs (2010 being the Year of the Tiger) to raise money for orphanages in St Petersburg and Moscow this Christmas.
The cubs were auctioned off in two lots, St Petersburg in November and Moscow on 03 December. Among the various celebs asked to participate were Madonna, Britney Spears, Keira Knightley, Nick Cave, Neil Tennant of the Pet Shop Boys, and of course Marat! His cub is to the left of the one wearing the Mad Max pelt.
from another angle
Here's Madonna's, apparently created during a Stairmaster workout.
Britney goes for the tramp stamp ...
Nick Cave almost breathes life into his
Neil Tennant, blingin'
The starting price for each cub was 10,000 rubles. Keira Knightley's cub fetched 33,000 (£660) and Madonna's a surprisingly low 37,000 (£740), while Britney's got 65,000 (£1,300) and Marat's a respectable 70,000 (£1,400). ROWR!!!
Total amount raised from the Moscow auction = 1,864,000 rubles (£37,200), which means that on Christmas morning, a lot of innocent eyes will be lighting up at the sight of presents under the tree.
More info on how the proceeds will be spent are in the last paragraph here: http://www.vmdaily.ru/article.php?aid=87942