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Embroidery of the Greek Islands and Epirus
Price: 100.00 GEL
Author: Roderick Taylor
Language: English
ISBN: 1899296050
Pages: 192
Weight: 1.1 kg
Status: In Stock

When the Greek Islands of the Aegean and the Adriatic lost the importance they held in the classical world were continuously fought over by succesive waves of conquerors. The Byzantines were followed by the Frankish Normans, the Venetians, the catalans, the Knights of St John, the Ottomans, with the occasional raid by the Arabs, and in the Adriatic by the British, the French and even the Russians. All these passers-through left traces of their cultures on the local inhabitands and these are most evident in the tradition of embroidered textiles. All the islands used embroidery as the principal decoration in their simple one-roomed houses, mainly on the elaborate bed tents and curtains and the hangings, cushions and bolsters used with them. Each group of islands developed quite different styles and repertoires of designs, using the linen, cotton and silk that they grew themselves. The varying mixtures of populations, urban foreigners and rural natives, Catholic towns and Orthodox villages, invading navies and armies and local peasentry, all contributed to a fusion of styles and motifs that led to one of the greatest displays of decorative folk art to be found anywhere in the world. The styles range from aristocratic and patrician styles from Rhodes, the monochrome geometric work of Naxos to the exuberant narrative style of Skyros and the Ottoman-influenced work of Epirus. The work persisted in isdolated areas even after the introduction of industrially  produced decorated textiles and the destruction of the local silk industry, and at the beginning of this century embroidery was taught again in the state schools.

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