ARTIGIANATO E PALAZZO - Botteghe Artigiane e loro Committenze

Project location: ITALY, Firenze
Project start date: May 2017 - Project end date: May 2017
Project number: 2017-009
Beneficiary: Associazione Giardino Corsini

"ARTIGIANATO E PALAZZO botteghe artigiane e loro committenze" was created in 1995, the brainchild of Neri Torrigiani and with the patronage of Princess Giorgiana Corsini. Its primary objective was to take a new look and provide a contemporary context for craftspeople and their crafts as the expression of quality and technique, not only in terms of clients, but also focusing on the concept of artisan workmanship which, by nature, is “modern” but solidly based in tradition.

The exhibition, now produced by the Corsini Garden Association of which Sabina Corsini is president, while sinking its premises in the wake of the most ancient artisan tradition, aims to highlight the contemporary nature of craftsmanship. The goal is in fact to present and enhance the figure of the craftsman, his work and his role in the current cultural and commercial context, as a high expression of quality and technique.

The intent was also to underscore the strong social relevance of artisans of the past when their workshops often prospered around the “palazzo”, the homes of the wealthy, as a “showcase” and venue for experimentation in an on-going interchange with clients from all social classes and benefiting from a direct relationship with the public and tradition as the preserver of a social aesthetic.

And it is through handicrafts, or “manufatto” (from the Latin “manu facere”: made by hand), that ARTIGIANATO E PALAZZO exhibitors have always been warmly encouraged to give live demonstrations of the techniques in which they excel.

Throughout the exhibition, visitors discover how artisans create their objects by hand by watching them work in the small workshops erected in the garden and orangeries.

Every year, organizers select approximately one hundred artisans who are the focal point of the event, most of them from Tuscany, but also many other areas of Italy and even abroad.

In addition to its importance as a cultural event to popularize crafts, the exhibition offers an opportunity to take a closer look at “applied arts” in order to bring them into our daily lives and set this event apart from more traditional craft shows and fairs.

Every year, a “Mostra Principe”, or Main Exhibition, is organized as part of ARTIGIANATO E PALAZZO. It spotlights a business (or cultural entity, museum, etc.) that began as an artisan activity to become successful on an international level.

It is an “exhibition within the exhibition” offering a special creative itinerary that has been acclaimed at the highest levels and which acts as a “beacon” for the other exhibitors.

By bringing together an ever-larger group of master craftspeople, we hope with the ARTIGIANATO E PALAZZO project to catalyze the attention of a broad-based audience open to these issues with the full interest and involvement of the protagonists involved: the artisans and their clients.

In addition to the main initiative of ARTIGIANATO E PALAZZO there are two sub-initiatives, BLOGS&CRAFTS I giovani artigiani e il web and RICETTE DI FAMIGLIA, both started in 2014 in celebration of the Twentieth Anniversary of the exhibition, with the goal of giving the exhibition a more modern perspective. 

BLOGS&CRAFTS, is an initiative begun by the ARTIGIANATO E PALAZZO exhibition committee that seeks to increase youth engagement in the event. In order to do so, the initiative creates opportunities for bloggers and traditional young artisans to have mutually beneficial exchanges of content and coverage. As part of this opportunity a select committee will choose 10 artisans under the age of 35 who will have the opportunity to freely exhibit their work during ARTIGIANATO E PALAZZO.

In addition, a group of bloggers in fields such as artisanal crafts, lifestyle, fashion, food and tourism will be selected and invited to the exhibition where they will be asked to live blog the event and write posts about their experience. 

The goal of this project, which received a grant from the Nando and Elsa Peretti Foundation is to place artisans in a contemporary context by modernizing traditional craft techniques and revaluating the private commissioning of handcrafts.  In order to best achieve the project's goal the event is heavily promoted through contemporary communication channels such as social media, which will allow the event greater visibility that extends beyond regional name recognition. By being a part of this festival, those artisans that participate will take advantage of this increased visibility, and will hopefully have an impact on an international level. Through the promotion of this event the exhibition seeks to create a cultural and commercial exchange that benefits both artisans and their clients. 

think global, act local
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