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Ukrainian folk art

Since ancient times Ukrainians have decorated their homes and
embellished their lives with hand crafted objects. Folk handicrafts were
used at times of celebration as well as in everyday life. Skills and
traditions were passed from generation to generation. The love and
appreciation of beauty created an esthetic environment. In homes,
engraved wooden containers were decorated with scenes from the lives of
folk heroes. Porcelain vases filled with flowers stood on carved wooden
shelves. Blossoms were painted on stoves and embroidered onto shirts.
Exotic flowers, branches of snowball trees (symbolizing the love for
one’s native land, a girl’s beauty and a mother’s love), tender buds and
plants are depicted in bold colors. 

It is thought that this style of ornamental painting appeared at the
same time as the tradition to decorate eggs with colorful, magic
symbols. It was believed that eggs adorned with those symbols would
protect one from evil. After the introduction of Christianity, the
meanings of these symbols changed. For example, a legend arose that
these painted eggs formed out of Christ’s tears. Meanings of some
symbols have survived to this day: a lily, for instance, symbolized
virginity. Buds and leaves represented birth, growth and the continuity
of life. A blossoming poppy was thought to protect one from evil and
negative energy. The Ukrainian decorative folk art of the 20th c. is a
diverse, multi-faced and complicated artistic phenomenon, that has been
developing for a century now in the sphere of traditional domestic art,
professional artists activity and artistic trades, where craftsmen and
artists make team-work aiming at preservation and further development of
traditions. The qualitative changes take place in the art of the 20th c.
They pertain to the functioning of the new forms of popular culture, its
inclusion into cultural and artistic space, as well as social being of
popular craftsmen, education, participation in international and
domestic artistic exhibitions, public acknowledgment and celebration. A
new type of popular craftsman is in the making, bright creative
personalities tend to appear. People and folk creation become the
foundation of national culture. Early in the 20th c. the creative
intelligentsia turned to popular art, started collecting and bringing
about museums, devising theoretical basis for the notion of «folk art».
The mutual influence of popular and professional art, deep structural
modifications, associated with forming of stylistic trends, esp. 

Ukrainian decorative folk art 

What is Tapestry

The art of weaving stands among the oldest the human ever tried to.
Things that will keep you warm in the outer coldness. Things that
beloved wife will lay her very care into. Things into which the young
maid will lay her expectations into for the future fianc?. May it be the
work of the spider which attracted attention of the first weaver, or the
perturbations of the sunbeams seen and passed into the laces, is never
known. But in many nations, the tapestries reflect the outer world the
weaver is experiencing, and sometimes the life history and the inner
world of him. Tapestry Construction 

The tapestries are constructed from yarn made of Picardy wool, Italian
silk and imported gold and silver threads. Linen and cotton were
sometimes used in place of wool and silk. The interweaving of metal
threads were used for high lighting and was introduced early into the
art. The typical European tapestry is heavy and thick. The dyes take on
the appearance of water color. The texture can be deliberately modified
to change, shade, and enrich the color contrasts, by incorporating silk
yarn, even to go as far as to create a magnificent sheen (see featured
tapestry) which is sparingly, and strategically distributed through the
tapestry. The art of tapestry weaving 

Prior to the 1800’s all tapestries were hand woven. There are two types
of looms which tapestries are woven on, vertical and horizontal. The
vertical loom produces a more perfect result, as the weaver at any time
during his weaving can walk around to the back of the loom to inspect
his progress, and effect of the work he is doing. With the horizontal
loom, the weaver has to use a mirror placed below the warp threads. As
the shuttle is moved back and forth he peers through the open threads,
giving him the only evidence of any possible errors made. Consequently,
until the piece is completed, the weaver has no idea if he has produced
a tapestry free from mistakes. An average daily production was
approximately 8 yards of fabric and it took eight hand spinners to keep
the supply of yarn. 

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