Super nice soapstone animal figures from Peru. All the animals are made by a large family who have elevated the processing of soapstone to an art form. Each animal is unique and a true piece of art.
History of soapstone sculptures
The oldest soapstone sculptures date back to China over 3,000 years ago. This is where the first soapstone crafts were born. The Ming dynasty was the pinnacle of this, which lasted from 1368 to 1644. From China, the art of soapstone working spread across Europe, Africa and the Middle East. For example, the ancient Greeks used soapstone for stamps, the Vikings made jewelry from it and a real sculpture culture emerged in Zimbabwe. From the 17th century, Europeans also started to work on soapstone art.
What is soapstone?
Soapstone is a mineral known as talc or steatite. It is very soft and is used as talcum powder, chalk or as a filler. The solid form suitable for sculpture is called soapstone. A polished stone feels a bit greasy and is therefore sometimes called soapstone. A property that protects the art pieces well against the influence of moisture.