Russian handicrafts: Gorodets painting

This style of decorative wood painting derives its name from the Gorodets settlement in the Nizhny Novgorod region that was famous for its woodwork crafts.

Gorodets painting is one of the folk arts and crafts of Russia, and a phenomenon of the so-called naive art.

Gorodets painting sprang from carved distaffs that were manufactured in villages nearby Gorodets town in the Nizhni Novgorod Region. Initially local craftsmen used the incrustation technique to ornament the distaffs. Gorodets artists traditionally paint genre scenes (merrymaking, tea drinking, riding the famous Gorodets horse), decorative images of birds or animals (roosters, horses, lions, leopards, etc.) and flower patterns.

Nowadays Gorodets craftsmen use similar imagery and motifs in their works. These are decorative panels, caskets, various sets of kitchen stuff, such as hardboards, bread bins, saltcellars, as well as children furniture and toys, including the most popular painted rocking horse. Along with preserving the artistic tradition and stylistic, dating to the 19th century, modern Gorodets painting keeps developing.

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