Tattooed Mountain Women and Spoon Boxes of Daghestan — Magic Symbols in Silk, Stone, Wood and Flesh
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“A serious inquiry into the motivation that empowers traditional artistic expression, it will be treasured as a source book for all who share in this search” – Times Literary Supplement
On the southernmost border of the Russian Federation lies Daghestan, a land of ancient villages perched among the Great Caucasus Mountains by the shores of the Caspian Sea. Beneath this rural Islamic society, animist tattoos on women and decoration on ritual spoon boxes share symbols that are believed to protect the hearth and the family.
Three experts have recorded this fascinating system of folk medicine, allowing the women’s own voices to reveal the living vocabulary of this hidden body language. The result provides a key to the symbols that adorn spoon boxes and other original objects found in Daghestan as well as throughout the carpet world.
– 96 pages with more than 140 colour images and 180 specially drawn tattoos that illustrate this unique vanishing tradition.
Published by Desert Hearts in association with Bennett & Bloom — specialists in the region of the Caucasus – in 2006