Wood carving by Armen Ohanyan, artisan at Wood Mystery. (Photo by Narek Harutyunyan, My Armenia Program)

Wood

Wood carving by Armen Ohanyan, artisan at Wood Mystery. (Photo by Narek Harutyunyan, My Armenia Program)

The art of woodcarvers greatly enlivened traditional homes in Armenia, which contained many wooden components, from cupola-shaped ceilings to functional furniture, bins, chests, cradles, ladles, and spoons. Woodcarvers often decorated tools, especially those responsible for sustaining life, such as grain bins or cradles. The purposes of the decorations were not only aesthetic but also to protect their contents from the evil eye. Woodcarvers created special amulets, known as daghdghan, for this purpose.  

As woodcarving became more industrialized in the twentieth century, the craft of woodcarving faded, surviving mainly in functional and unpretentious ladles. In the 1970s, however, a new life for woodcarving emerged, thanks in part to its revival through museums to homes. In the early 1990s, during the first unstable years of independence, a new stage of revival emerged, as many amateur woodcarvers made their hobby a profession.

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