As art shows go, this one is bound to be a cell out because the artists are all inmates from women's prisons.


And the sculpture medium is snow, something they are never short of in the remote region in north-central Russia's Komi Republic where average February temperatures are nearly minus 20 degrees Celsius.


The collection was collated by prison officials at the Federal Service for the Execution of Sentences who put the best of the artworks on show.


One intricately carved sculpture featured the Tsar Cannon and Tsar Bell, famous tourist attractions in the Russian capital, Moscow.


Others included Russia's Slavic version of Santa, Ded Moroz - or Old Man Frost - and his granddaughter helper, the Snow Maiden.


Another is a copy of the USSR Communist era's iconic statue Worker and Kolkhoz Woman, showing a couple with a hammer and sickle held aloft.


A different group created a monumental gathering of six larger than life soldiers 3.05 metres tall and 1.5 metres wide.


The prisoners even pay their respects to Russian president Vladimir Putin's call for 2017 to be the Year of Ecology.


The ice statue shows the world being cradled in two human hands.


Officials say the contest winners will be announced later this month.

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Author: David Rogers