LIKHAI is a magnificent wood carving tradition that was a part of the mountain architecture in Kumaon. This carving is found mostly on structural elements of residence which are enriched with folk, religious, and Tantric patterns.
The tantric art design is a significant part of the Kumaon region. The carving is done in the design of stylized plants and analytical patterns into a single window and door. The outskirt of the door sometimes has up to 16 columns of carvings- birds, flowers, gods, religion, etc. The panels are carved solely and merged after the carving is completed.
A small village in Pithoragarh known as Munsyari is a centre for wood carving. even in the other part of Uttarakhand wood carving is popular and can be seen. Almora has many old houses that still have a touch of wood carving.
Munsyari is also famous for its wood cravers.
one of the most famous wood cravers of Uttarakhand known as “GANGA RAM” he is the last surviving craftsman of Kumaon, he is 89 years old.
Gangaramji was a 13th-year-old when he started learning about the craft of Likhai.
In Garhwal, the carving is bound to the temples only but in Kumaon, region carving can be seen in houses doors and windows.
Likhai art is fading today because of the rising cost and insufficiency of good wood along with changing architectural choices have negatively affected the Likhai craft.
still, we are trying our best to bring wood craving tradition back to the track and also trying to mix it with modern architecture so that we can create modern architectural structures without forgetting our traditional Kumaon roots.

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