The Ballad of the Wood

The Ballad of the Wood Director: Suha Arin
Director of Photography: Ilhan Arakon
Camera: Turhan Yavuz
Editor: Cahit Seymen
Music by: Nadir Gokturk
Narrator: Sureyya Arin (TR), Ian Shears (EN)
Duration: 35 min.
Format: 35 mm Color Film
Production Year: 1987

"The Western Black Sea" from the series "Old Houses Old Masters", tells the story of a world famous master and his world famous violin: Ayla Erduran and her Stradivarius…

The beginning of the film "The Ballad of the Wood" documents the master craftsmen who are connoisseurs of the particular type of tree, which is said to be utilized for the making of these renowned violins.

Directed by Suha Arin, "The Ballad of the Wood" reveals the traditional architecture of the houses of the Western Black Sea region for centuries has been passed down from father to son, from master to apprentice through secrets and a technique known as "canti". Some of the houses shown have been standing for the last 100 to 150 years.

The film honors the great craftsman of the past who utilized the "dizeme" technique through an emphasis on structures that are 300 years old. These examples are some of the most unique to be found in the Western Black Sea region. This craft has been passed down from generation to generation. Now only a few old and tired practitioners are left and they reveal to the camera their anti-earthquake construction techniques. The average age of the craftsmen is 80 years old.

The documentary not only portrays the famous "bagdadi" houses of the Western Black Sea region but also indicates the connection between the style and construction of housing found at Bolu, Göynük, Safranbolu, Mudurnu, Gerede, Boyabat, İnebolu, Kastamonu, Tokat and Amasya.

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