Wood carving | The white chamois

After the post on the Sant’Orso Fair, it seems appropriate to spend a few words on the form of craftsmanship that in the Fair is the lion’s share: the carving of wood.

The decorative processing of wood has ancient origins. Throughout the Alps, both in Italy and abroad, woodworking has always been one of the most important craft activities.

The simplest type, from the point of view of the necessary equipment and technique, is the knife-head carving.

The use of the tip of the knife derives precisely from the pastoral origin of this “poor” art that was practiced by shepherds and peasants with the only simple, economic and practically in everyone’s possession: their own knife. From a simple pastime practiced while watching grazing animals or in long winter evenings, this form of carving has evolved to become a true decorative art, used to embellish everyday objects and simple furniture in the home.

The knife-head carving is essentially based on the cut and subsequent removal of inverted pyramids with a triangular base juxtaposed to each other to obtain a geometric pattern.

Today, to practice this form of art, it is no longer necessary to use a simple shepherd’s knife, but specific knives are available on the market, which facilitate work and allow the creation of more complex and refined decorations.