Gourd Art: the Creative Process


For the past two thousand years, Peruvians have carved stories of their ancestors and present days onto the surfaces of gourds, and members of Arte en Mate aim to preserve this ancient tradition at their humble workshop in Cochas Chico.

Passed down from generation to generation, the methods behind this unique art form are painstaking. First, artisans carefully cut away the green skin, clean the gourd and leave it out in the sun. Once it is dry, they sketch the desired pattern in pencil and use a buril to carve out this design. The tip of a piece of Quinal wood is then heated and applied to the gourd. During this meticulous process, the artisan blows on the burning tip of their primitive tool to create color variations. After being rinsed off and wiped down, they’re ready for display. Interested in adorning your home with a piece of Peruvian culture? Available at Original Good, Arte en Mate’s Gourdgeous ornaments make fabulous decorations for the upcoming holidays.