How The Worlds Oldest Wooden Sculpture Is Reshaping Prehistory

The wood used in the sculpture appears to be around 12,250 years old. Since the Shigir Idol was made from the trunk of a larch tree with 159 growth rings, this suggests that the statue itself was carved around 12,100 years ago – around 500 years earlier than the 2018 analysis showed. A mysterious code on the world’s oldest wooden sculpture could be an 11,500-year-old ode to ancient spirits. We also have wooden sculptures and carvings of Lord Krishna, avatar of Vishnu and god himself.

wooden sculpture

Many of the most important sculptures of China and Japan, in particular, are in wood, and so are the great majority of African sculpture and that of Oceania and other regions. Wood is light and can take very fine detail so it is highly suitable for masks and other sculpture intended to be worn or carried. Mid-Century Modern, Cubist style hand carved mahogany wooden sculpture of a seated nude, France, 1960.

Vintage 1930s American Sculptures

Many sculptures have also been found in England and Scandinavian countries. Wood is also widely used in Africa to create masks, small statues and objects, as well as in India and by aboriginal artists in Australia. “Benalu was not used in sculptures but only as firewood. But I saw the enormous potential in this wood because of its unique and fascinating shapes — no two pieces are ever identical.” It would be a lot easier to consider these sculptures “art”, if the residence itself didn’t look like a murder house and/or drug den.


I’ve never personally considered them sexual, yet understand how others project that onto them. While there was some rot going on in the base, it was in not danger of falling and there are many ways to remedy such a sculpture to protect it for posterity. I sincerely hope they can be replaced or restored. I love taking friends by to see these fascinating creations. Born in Mura, Italy, in about 1887, Gabriel worked as a furniture maker before heading to America at the age of 26.

Intarsia is basically a 3D wooden mosaic sculpture on which you cut, carve and shape individual pieces of a wooden parts, then put them together with glue. When Doug Rowell isn’t playing a guitar, he’s carving one. Doug turns electric guitars into different commemorative art pieces. The engraving is a truly remarkable work of art so much so that most of his customers choose to hang them on their walls rather than play them. The amount of detail in his carvings is really impressive.

The World’s Oldest Known Wooden Statue Is Over 7,000 Years Older Than Stonehenge

These statues are created with permanent materials like bronze, stone, wood and brass. Likewise, our wooden sculptures of Lord Shiva celebrate this great deity of the pantheon. Like Vishnu, many Hindus believe Shiva to be the fundamental principle of creation, and so they worship him and his consort with deep devotion. Still others believe him to be the destroyer god as part of a triumvirate with Brahma and Vishnu. Thirteen feet down the idol was discovered, and retrieved in 10 fragments. The pieces were carted 60 miles to Yekaterinburg, the city where, 28 years later, the last czar of the Russian Empire, Emperor Nicholas II; his wife, Alexandra; and their children would be executed by the Bolsheviks.

A wax finish (e.g. shoe polish) is comparatively fragile though and only suitable for indoor carvings. The phrase may also refer to the finished product, from individual sculptures to hand-worked mouldings composing part of a tracery. Exotic India has thousands of masterful wooden sculptures and carvings available for sale.

Correctly, a gouge is a tool with a curved cross-section and a chisel is a tool with a flat cross-section. However, professional carvers tend to refer to them all as ‘chisels’. Smaller sculptures may require the woodcarver to use a knife, and larger pieces might require the use of a saw. No matter what wood is selected or tool used, the wood sculptor must always carve either across or with the grain of the wood, never against the grain. One of my favorite process art experiences for my art students is setting out wooden pieces and letting them make sculptures. On this day, I gave them the prompt to make imaginary playgrounds.

James McNabb creates miniature architectural wonders using an abstract style he calls “Sketching with a bandsaw”. In his City series he creates intricate skyscraper designs from wood with different color tones. Each building is unique, just like an actual urban landscape. Look at the extreme labor of love he displays on the feathers and furs of his animal sculptures.



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