Wood is a unique material; even its very smell envelops you. We love wood and treat it with a respect and care that comes from both our deep sense of conviction and our commitment to environmental sustainability. We love it to create fine pieces of art using this precious gift from nature.
The Swiss stone pine, also known as Arolla pine or Austrian stone pine, is a typical plant of the Alps. It typically grows in positions over 1500 meters, often reaching the alpine tree line. For this reason, it was one of the first types of wood that were used for carving in Val Gardena.
This type of pine has a reddish color and is relatively soft. Moreover, one of its peculiarities is certainly the presence of a marked grain and of many knots. This is why this it is mainly used for carving sculptures intended to be left natural rather than painted. Finally, the Swiss pine releases a pleasant wood fragrance for a long time.
The European ash (Fraxinus) is one of the tallest deciduous trees in Europe. It can reach up to 40 meters in height. Its genus belongs to the olive and lilac family, Oleaceae.
The main feature of this type of wood is the porous structure of its grain that strucks you right away, no matter whether the figures are left natural or painted. Therefore, this wood lends itself well to creating sculptures in modern style.
The cherry wood we use for our sculptures is also known as ‘bird cherry’, a flowering plant in the rose family, Rosaceae. It is a deciduous tree that grows up to 25 meters tall and prospers across most of central Europe.
The sapwood of the cherry tree is yellowish-white, while the heartwood is red-brown. Therefore, this wood is very suitable for creating modern wooden figures that are not painted.
Nut-wood is considered to be a very valuable wood type. We use it to carve modern art thanks to its dark brown color and its very peculiar grain.
The walnut tree was originally native to Asia, growing mainly in Persia. It found its way to Europe through Greece, reaching the Roman Empire and, finally, being planted in many regions in central Europe.
It is not only the art of carving that has a long-lived tradition in Val Gardena but also the art of painting.
There are various ways to give the sculptures a special touch through painting, as well as various techniques to produce refined finishes.
It's a long way from the first idea to the completed wooden figurines. When creating a new sculpture, each team member contributes with his own inspiration and we often rely on suggestions from our customers.
Our expert craftsmen make great efforts to create new masterpieces starting from a simple draft.
The artist bases his work on the clay template to create the first original wooden sculpture. Great knowhow and craftmanship and utmost attention to details are required when using the carving tools. The original wooden model will later be used to reproduce the sculptures in scale.
Before being used for carving, the wood must be seasoned for a long time, sometimes even for years.
In some cases, we use special drying chambers to reduce the moisture level below 10%. This process is very important because it allows us to guarantee the stability of the wood and, thus, to reduce the risk of damage.
The seasoned and dried wood can now be processed. When large sculptures are created, it is necessary to use several wooden boards, which are glued together, to ensure the stability of the sculpture. The base shape of the sculpture is created with a pantograph. Then, each figurine must be processed by experienced carvers, who carve all details by hand using special woodcarving tools. Once this step is completed, the natural version of the sculpture is available for purchase.
Of course, it is possible to further refine natural sculptures and there are various techniques to give them a special touch through painting. Wooden figurines can be stained - with one or more stain shades - or they can be painted. As for the painting, several techniques can be adopted including oil painting or the antiquing technique. Moreover, painted statues can be further refined by gilding them: the painter can either use a brass foil or gild the statue with pure 23 carat gold.