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Home 01 March 2021
Culture Traditional forms of Art - Professions Wood sculpture Epirus Metsovo

Detail of the framing for the Despotic icon, Monastery for the Repose of the Virgin Mary at Periblepton (1708-1724)
(Photo: Triantaphyllos Sioulis)

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Geographic map of Ioannina Prefecture with the works of Metsovo and Kapesovo wood sculptors
Geographic map of Ioannina Prefecture with the works of Metsovo and Kapesovo wood sculptors

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Topics
made of stone
textliles
Silver work
Wood sculpture
Hagiography - Painting
LOCATION
Epirus
Gorgopotamos
Metsovo
Wood sculpture: Subtopics All topics
Representative works
Wood sculpture of Metsovo
Wood sculpture of Gorgopotamos

14/11/2006
The work and living conditions

Triantaphyllos Sioulis

© Prefecture of Ioannina
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The working conditions for the wood sculptors were certainly not good. From the cutting of the suitable timber, its transportation, its time consuming and laborious preparation and processing, as well as their journeys and the compulsory migration, we can imagine how difficult their life must have been.
On many occasions they were also compelled to take their entire family with them, where it related to living in a certain location for a long time, in accordance with the requirements of their work. For example we shall mention the case of The Metsovo taliadoros Giorgis Meranos, who in 1881 had take his entire family with him which then numbered 11 people. This has been stated by his son, the teacher Demetrios G. Meranos: «...HE MOVED TO THE SURROUNDING VILLAGES OF LAMIA, WHERE MY FAMILY LIVED FOR ABOUT ONE AND A HALF YEARS IN THE VILLAGES OF GIANTZION, PLATYSTOMON, AGA AND VARYBOMBI, WHERE I WAS ALSO ABLE TO TAKE PRIMARY SCHOOL LESSONS».
They were coerced, even with threats on their actual lives, in order to undertake projects for the Beys and the Agas as a result of their great reputation, which indicates to us that they also had to confront additional difficulties in their work.
They would have undergone through great ordeals on the basis for example of the suffering by a gang of builders – craftsmen, who had agreed with a Turkish – Albanian bey to build a seraglio and not only were they not paid, but they were also forced with threats to work beyond what had been agreed upon.
Their journeys also created a lot of problems for both them and their families. «THE WOOD SCULPTORS FROM KONITSA TRAVELLED THROUGHOUT ALL THE BALKANS» and like the ceiling builders «THEY DID NOT HAVE SPECIFIC TRAVELLING PERIODS. MOST WERE ABSENT FOR THE ENTIRE YEAR, ENSURING AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE TO RETURN TO THE VILLAGE FOR CERTAIN FESTIVALS. LIFE FOR THE WOMEN IN THE VILLAGE WAS UNBEARABLE, SINCE THEY DID NOT HAVE ANY HELP FROM THEIR HUSBAND».