Zanzibar Home Page

Vietnam Stone

Carved Soapstone & Verdite Boxes

Hand Carved Artisan stoneware from master carvers of north Vietnam near Hanoi.  Designs are both archetypal and modern and include small ring boxes, larger boxes, vases, pencil boxes, drawered chests, and freestanding candle sconces.

These items are stone, specifically a hard variety of soapstone (called Verdite) that is produced by the forces of the earth's plates along the Red River Shear Zone in Vietnam. 

The natural grain that you see is characteristic.  Master artisans and their apprentices use traditional carving techniques in a workshop setting similar to the workshops of the renaissance.  Artists pride themselves on sculptural detailing and 100% of the carving is done freehand with no power tools.  The master shapes the more delicate parts of the piece that require a higher skill level, while the apprentice assists him as he learns the masterís trade. In this way, they ensure that the techniques are passed down from one master to the next, without losing the artistic style of this 3,000-year-old culture.

Combining their ancient artistry with more western-style, the Vietnamese stone carvers seek to introduce fresh, new ideas, while not compromising their own unique characteristics as traditional artisans. The soapstone occurs naturally, and the carving is all done free hand, resulting in a look with a natural organic flow, wrapping around the pieces to create a three dimensional work of art that is unique from every angle.

The pieces that Zanzibar is currently offering is the very finest from only the top master carvers of Vietnam.  We've searched long and hard to bring only the very best to our clientele.  Each piece will add a point of interest and conversation, as well as a touch of ancient Southeast Asian culture, to any room.  Fairly traded.  Visit our gallery for an ever-changing inventory.  Shipments received several times per year.  Here's a SMALL sampling: