Are there any very old Art Gourds?


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Gourd Carousel ™

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How is a Gourd Carousel ™ like a German Pyramid

What is a Gourd

Why do they call it Gourd Art

Are there any very old Art Gourds?

What were Gourds used for in Pre-Modern times?

How many types or shapes of Gourds are there?

Are Gourds Edible?

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Are there any very old Art Gourds, the answer is yes. The gourd has been a part of human existence since before the advent of pottery. While the first known uses were simple ones like containers for water and other food items, they became personal items and people would decorate them so they could be identified.

To give a modern note to just how long gourd art has been around, this is the 15th year for the annual Gourd Art Festival that was sponsored by the California Gourd Society. There were five different levels at which the competition was open to for the competitors to enter their art work. This included children under the age of 12. The youth division included ages of 13 to 17, then onto the novice classification for any non-winners from the past.

The open division is for anyone who does not think of themselves as a novice. The masters division is composed of those that have won awards for their art work in the past, sold their gourd art in galleries or have had their gourd art published.

A little known fact about gourds is that in 1807 it was used as currency on the island of Haiti. This was short lived, but it did occur and today the coin used in Haiti as the national currency is called the gourde.

Today there is gourd art from the past in nearly every culture including North and South America, Africa, Asia and Europe. In excavations done to uncover the past, shards of gourd pottery with decorations have been found at numerous sites. This was the most common form of vessels before the advent of pottery and is still with us today.

One of the reasons the gourd has been used for such a long period is how versatile the plant really is. It can be burned, carved and painted just as wood art is. It also has a long life as being useful when the gourd is cleaned and dried properly.

Today the use of gourds as an all natural work of art is still being used. Unlike the past, today artisans can seal the gourd so its life expectancy of the art can be significantly extended. A Gourd Carousel ™ is a fine example of this.

A Gourd Carousel ™ is made in a similar theme as the Christmas pyramid. This will include nativity scenes and other winter festival characters like Santa. By encasing the gourd components of the carousel with urethane, the moisture and other atmospheric conditions can be kept away from the gourds surface. This will keep the gourd art looking like new for years and decades to come when properly handled.

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To meet Artist Cia Silla - the original "Gourd Carousel ™" creator

Ancient Chinese coins have been found in the shape of gourds dating back to 7 AD. This could be the earliest remaining intact pieces of gourd art found today. While not made from the gourd itself, they do represent how people over 2 millenniums ago felt about this fruit and how it could be used.

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