Likhai/Wood Carving of Uttrakhand

Likhai/Wood Carving of Uttrakhand

The wood carving tradition of Uttarakhand is an integral part of the hill society and is also known as Likhai. The carving is found on the dwellings primarily in the form of folk, religious and tantric motifs. Tantric art forms an important part of the Kumaon region. The carving is done in the form of stylized plants and geometrical motifs into a single window and door. The borders of the door sometimes have up to 14 rows of carvings- swans, parrots, lotus, creepers etc. The panels are carved separately and joined together after the carving is done. Munsyari in Pithoragarh district is a noted centre for wood carving. The houses are adorned with Tibetan motifs like the three-flower motif, the arch and dragons. In Garhwal region the carving is limited to the temples. Likhai art is languishing today because of the rising cost and unavailability of good raw wood.

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