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электронный журнал "Новые исследования Тувы"

Tuva. Souvenirs and human lives.

USK "Subedei" turned into a huge New Year fair, where local entrepreneurs presented their products. The "General rehearsal" took place last night. An exhibition - fair of souvenirs by Tuvan artisans opened at the National Museum of Tuva.


'Who became related to the Taiga in the mountains".

Oyun Ayan was born and lived away from Tuva, and was brought up at a boarding school. He returned to Tuva only to avoid going to the army. The chief directions of his work are graphics, photography, polygraphs. He worked out his own style, and presented engravings and posters at the fair.

The engravings show Tuvan life-style, with his own poems. Here, for example, is "Konovyaz" (pole for tying horses): "Sharp sickle of the moon on the horizon guards the pole by the yurt, so that a nomad drinking tea as old customs demand would not have to hurry." Another poem speaks of "one who became relate to the taiga in the mountains". In general, taiga - in Tuvan language - means high forested mountains, so it can't be anywhere but in the mountains. But those are details, and on top of that, Oyun Ayan does not speak Tuva. The engravings are very good, it is "just the thing" for tourists. Tourists will not understated anyway that there is no real Tuvan style or Tuvan traditions there.

Mongolian master - artisan

Her name is Ulamsyuren Tsetsegdal.  She is Mongolian, but the exhibition presents the works of her students. The girl who sits behind the table with the souvenirs does not really know much it seems that TGU teaches how to make these souvenirs, but she does not know at which department.  Tiny souvenir slippers and charms are on exhibit. Here is a toy kymchy - whip, and here an interesting puzzle: something made out of animal bones (maybe sheep?) - and you are supposed to take out one of the bones without untying the knot. All in all - everything is at the level of homemade toys.

Orda against Orden

The words are very similar - in both sound and meaning. Orda is a camp, station, and orden is a rule, standing in order. And all of these together  make up a chess set. Crusaders against Mongol armies. Crusaders are silver, Mongols are made of brass. The crusaders have arbalests, Mongols have bows, and horses are of different breeds. Who will win? That depends on how you play.

Vladimir Lebedev is a provisions officer, served in Military air fleet of USSR in the Ukraine. After the disintegration, he did not give an oath to Ukraine. So his hobby became a profession.

He learned techniques of metal casting from a man in Ukraine. And he worked out his own technique of weaving. What could be easier to understand - wire macrame, but his technique really is special, and he has a patent.

Vladimir Lebedev's souvenirs do not always stick to the Tuvan theme, even though there is something for tourists - for example, medallions depicting Genghis Khan, bear claws and teeth set in silver. "But why is there a rooster on the bear claw?" it turns out that it is not a bear claw at all - it is a huge rooster's fighting spur. But it looks very much like a claw.

White gold

Not in some metaphoric sense. It is really white gold that many of Olchey Albes's jewelry is made of.  The price is obviously not souvenir-like. He studied as a jeweller in Yakutsk, he worked there fro tow years on a contract, and now has been living and working in Tuva for already a year. There are practically no objects with a national theme, but that is not his choice. He works on orders, and the clients often supply a sketch of the future artifact. National motives are fashionable now. One ring shows a running horse, another - yin-yang emblem.

Doshpuluur in America

Marat Damdyn makes musical instruments. He studied with Aldan Goboyev, here in Tuva. He can make practically any musical instrument, and has made more than a hundred of them already: chadagans, igils, chanzy…

He only found out about the exhibition last night, and made quick rounds of the friends for whom he made instruments. Of course, not everybody. His instruments are in Moscow, and also in America, - you can't get them back for an exhibition from there.

He spent two months in the USA in 2002, presenting workshops, making musical instruments. Americans also try to play, and they try throat-singing.  It is not  too bad for foreigners.

Sugar in a pillow

Syrtyk is not an ordinary pillow. And, mostly, it is not necessary to sell it filed up, only the case is necessary. Syrtyk is a rectangular cushion, richly decorated on one side, and the other side is turned towards the yurt wall - who would decorate that! Women used to keep their personal intimate things in these cushions. This is where they kept their infant's hair after the celebration of  the first hair-cut. And they could also keep pieces of sugar there, which used to be very expensive. That cushion was a type of a safe and box for expensive things.

Oorzhak Choigan helps her mother with organization of the enterprise; she is the manager, and mama supplies ideas and inspiration. And a handicapped woman sews these pleasant "safes"; she is also bringing up a handicapped child. It is a social project. OOO "Badma" will grow, it was founded only recently. Such cushions are bought as presents - as a wedding gift, and once, as a souvenir, a cushion went tho the Ukraine. National traditions and their interesting design make this product a really good souvenir.

plusinform.ru, translated by Heda Jindrak
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