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|From the remotest ages woodcarving has been a foremost art practiced all over the globe. Wood provides an excellent medium for the artists to express their artistic flair and creativity. Some of the finest specimens of woodcarving can be traced back to the Middle Ages in Italy and France. The typical themes of wood carving in this era were Christian iconography. Since times immemorial it has been the tendency of the human disposition to adorn every useful article. Wood has been an all time favorite choice of the craftsmen due to its soft texture.|
The Egyptians used the wood sculpted objects for spiritual purposes in antiquity. The early statues of different Gods and Goddesses were carved out of wood. But the real development of wooden sculpture took place only in the Christian era. The sparse remains of the earlier specimens show that wood was then partly used for the same church purposes of today. In the ancient period reliquaries were also carved out of wood. It is interesting enough to know that the entire artwork of the Germans was mostly sculpted out of wood. The churches were mostly constructed out of wood and the fittings were also of the same material. The adornment of the surfaces was intricately carved out of wood.
The finest specimens of wooden sculpture during the entire Romanesque period can be seen surrounding the doors in Norwegian churches and wooden reliquary belonging to the former monastery of Lokkum in Hanover and several chairs in the Museum of Christiania. Although due to the paucity of remains it is impossible to write a continuous history of wood carving, we are still justified enough to say that woodcarving was often used for ecclesiastical ornamentation. At the opening of the Gothic period wood sculpture has reached such a stage that we can term it as a golden era of wooden sculpture. Many new ecclesiastical requirements were added by the wood sculpture of the Gothic period.
The most distinguished sculptors of the late Middle Ages produced the most noted wood carved altars. In the later stages Gothic woodcarving borrowed its ornamentation from stone carving. Most of the wooden sculptures of the late Middle Ages are renowned for their richness of the ornamental carving and the scenes portrayed by the figurines.
Medieval woodcarving was not limited to the production of church reliquary but was strongly influenced by the art of painting, since several German sculptors were also painters. The Renaissance wood sculpture exhibits a complete that can scarcely be surpassed. Except the manner of ornamentation, nothing was altered in the style of wooden sculptures in the following decades.
In India also the wooden statues date back to the remotest times. The wide assortment of wooden sculptures available in India comprises of a collection of fine craftsmanship. The pieces carved out either of hard wood or softwood is given various shapes and forms including that of Indian mythological and spiritual figures as well as a wide range of decoratives. Wood sculptures of India can also be categorized in two types, namely wooden wall sculptures and wooden garden sculptures. North India flaunts a distinct type of wood sculpture whereas the South Indian wooden sculpture is known for their intricate detailings.
‘India Handicraft Store’ presents all the relevant information about Wooden Sculptures.
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