The Boyash


2015, Canada-Romania (15′ 00″)

Director Daniela Apostoaei

The Boyash community in a village of Southern Romania

Official Poster The Boyash Documentary 2015, Director Daniela Apostoaei


In a region of south-central Romania, the Boyash people still live and work as craftsmen, carving the same simple woodcrafts they’ve sold in the area’s towns and villages for more than 200 years.

In their small settlements, geese and dogs roam the streets, children play and the old men and women sit outside their doorways, wooden logs braced between their feet or on their laps, sharp knives shaving thin strips from the pale-coloured sticks. Under their hands, the rough wood rapidly evolves into that universal kitchen tool, the wooden spoon. But it may all be soon coming to an end.

Core Team


Daniela Apostoaei



Ryan Stockert



Codrut Miron



Eugen Banescu

Camera Operator


Florentin Nastase

Music Producer


Tara Klager



The Boyash people are simple and their way of life has existed in its present form for generations. The children of the Boyash don’t want to continue carving spoons or making brooms, the modern world beckons. Jobs in the big cities with better pay and modern comforts are far more appealing than a week spent hawking the simple wooden tools of their grandparents, sleeping in ditches and huddled against buildings in the centre of Romania’s bustling towns, their wares spread out in front of them in bags and blankets. The wooden spoons, kitchen tools, brooms and other household implements the Boyash produce are not as valuable as they once were, selling for less than $1 CAD each.

In a new and rapidly changing world, a world the elder members have to accept the harsh reality with equanimity. “We ran out of time,” says one man. It’s an odd thing to say standing in a place that time seems to have forgotten. A horse-drawn wagon zips down the street, open kitchen fires roast vegetables and children struggle to push a cobbled-together go kart up a small incline. It seems unlikely that time was ever much of a consideration in the village and that life would continue much as it always has. But even here, even as we speak, life for the Boyash changes. And with that change, the spoons and brooms are slowly disappearing.

“The Boyash” documentary has been officially selected to compete in the Pineapple Underground Film Festival, PUFF 2015 in Hong Kong, It also received the Honorary Prize at Gala for Press Awards 4th Edition, Romania. In 2016 it was awarded the Gold Kahuna Winners for Documentary Short Competition at the Honolulu Film Awards, and got the 2016 Silver Palm Award Winner for Documentary Short Competition at the Mexico International Film Festival.

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