Taras Poliovyi is a carpenter. With great attention to detail, he restores historically unique old wooden windows and doors in his home town of Lviv. On behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, GIZ is supporting the Ukrainian city in preserving its UNESCO world cultural heritage site. Poliovyi and a dozen other tradespeople have set up small businesses and are now helping to preserve the historic cityscape.
Lviv is my hometown. The city is like an open air museum. If you want to know what an architectural element looked like in any past era, you can simply walk into the old town and look at it. You can find every style from the Renaissance to Modernism.
Lviv is a UNESCO world cultural heritage site and it needs motivated and qualified craftsmen for rehabilitation work. Cooperation between Germany and Ukraine has established a solid basis for this. But there are still too many people in the city who don’t think about the harm they are doing when they throw away old historic objects. I wish people here would treat the old buildings with more respect and would understand that we need to preserve them .
I need to really understand the work of the old masters, relate to their methods and imitate them – so that our grandchildren can also benefit from them. I see this as my duty and responsibility. I want to continue doing my work and spread my knowledge.
I help other townspeople with my expert knowledge. People often call me and ask for advice – on the phone or at a particular site. I don’t ask for money even if it often costs me a lot of time. In this way I can pass onto others my love for the old ways.
My children are most important to me. I feel responsible for teaching them to preserve our cultural treasures. I hope my son will follow in my path and also become a restorer.