Replicas of wooden beehive panels, a unique folk art tradition here, are quite common in Slovenian gift and souvenir shops.

It’s a naive art tradition that dates back to the latter half of the 18th C when apparently bored beekeepers made the switch from one-color designs to painting more vivid scenes and images on their beehive drawers. Most that I’ve seen, originals and souvenir replicas, have religious or historical motifs so I’m not sure where this scene fits in that scheme of things.

I found this one in Svetina, a delightful little village in the hills of eastern Slovenia.  It’s a quiet, tranquil place these days, apparently unlike those heady days of 1887 depicted above. Does anyone have any idea what story this panel is trying to tell?

More about beehive panels in Slovenia here and here, a gallery of panels from the apicultural museum in Radovljica is here, and a few more of my pics from Svetina here.

Svetina 03, originally uploaded by pirano.