“Tradition lives because young people come along who catch its romance and add new glories to it.”– Michael Novak
There are days when we forget how important keeping the tradition is. It’s a very powerful force created in the past to remind everyone today how heritage is important while looking to the future. That’s the way how we make a balance between the past and the future, a balance between the old and the new generations.
Whenever I walk through the old part of Ohrid, there is a sign that always makes me gasp in front of the message it holds: “It’s the art that leaves the mark”. These words are engraved in a wooden sign, that lures inside a workshop where the creativity transforms the wood into a masterpiece of art. This little magic place is the wood-carving gallery “TRON”.
The family Nelovski, the son Ivo (the photography below) and his father Dragan, are the people responsible for the magic inside “TRON”. Dragan has learned this amazing craft in the wood-carving studio which was part of the factory EMO in the 1990s. He had an opportunity to study from some of the best crafters in Ohrid at that time, Stefco Grozdan and Ljupco Spaseski. Later he decided to pass the passion for this art to his family, his two sons, growing it into a family business. The family Nelovski owns the wood-carving Gallery TRON and brings this craft closer to the tourists or everyone that wants to get familiar with creating this type of art.
There are different types of wood-carvings that you can see in this workshop, most common are the traditional deep and tile carving. You can also find more modern designs like the masks at the entrance, the first photo. And that’s the moment where you can feel how the tradition merges with contemporary art.
Everyone who visits the workshop will get an explanation on how everything is done, the whole process of creating these wooden masterpieces and see its creation on spot. I’ve heard Ivo so many times explaining to the tourists the process of wood carving, expecting his passion to derive. Instead, each time he is more enthusiastic, more eager to show and talk to the people about his crafts. For his creations, he uses only the best wood for carving, which is the walnut. Everything is handmade, while the tools that bring life to his imagination are on the photographies below. If you want to learn more about the process of woodcarving, click here.
The wood-carvings are a unique souvenir that you can buy in Ohrid, with a 100% guaranty that is made in Ohrid, not like many other souvenirs in the city that are made in China. Don’t miss to visit this place when you are coming to Ohrid.
Working hours: Monday – Saturday 10:00 – 14:00 18:00-20:00; Sunday 10:00 – 14:00
Thank you for reading.