The Handicrafts Sector
The combination of history, different cultures and beautiful landscapes means that Apulia is home to many materials that in the skilled hands of its craftsmen can be transformed into items used in the home as well as genuine works of art. This centuries-old tradition encapsulates the entire history of the region and continues, in its lanes, streets and historic town centres, to keep it alive today. Handicrafts are a significant economic resource that has become even more important over time, safeguarding ancient skills as it continues to innovate and become increasingly internationalised.
Ceramics, paper mache, embroidery, musical instruments, wrought iron, glass and mosaics are just some of the artisanal skills represented in Apulia. It is a vital sector that provides significant support to the region’s culture, tourism, creativity and job market.
Ceramics is just one of the region’s traditional artistic productions and is centred around Grottaglie (Taranto). As the sector developed across the region, so too did different forms and methods and the great variety of shapes found in Apulian ceramics is encapsulated in its famous terracotta whistles that have come to symbolise Apulian craftsmanship.
Even the poorest of materials can be turned into art and this is certainly true of paper mache, one of the region’s most creative and representative art forms. It is shaped and moulded to bring the traditional “pupi” – the little statues placed in cribs – to life and also used to create the characters from the Commedia D’arte (e.g. Harlequin, Pierrot) that feature in Putignano’s famous carnival.
Weaving and embroidery also feature strongly in the region’s handicraft sector, representing the history of the region’s women who are still creating exquisite items that are quite unique. The region’s raw materials have always been used by its craftsman, especially those created by nature, like wood, cane and common reeds that in the hands of Apulia’s artisans are turned into items useful in daily life, musical instruments and decorative items.
Another flourishing artisanal sector has developed over time around Apulia’s stone quarries, where a combination of brute force and creativity has resulted in pieces used to adorn palaces and monuments, design objects and works of art.
Wrought iron, a symbol of Apulia’s Baroque period and yet another of the traditional handicrafts practiced by skilled Apulian hands, can be seen in balcony and stair rails, street lights and candelabra and features in many other forms used to embellish palaces and even more humble abodes.
Artistic glasswork and mosaics are another aspect of Apulia’s traditional creativity. Design objects and decorative items are still produced in local workshops, born of the fusion between glass, ingenuity and knowledge passed from one generation to the next. No wonder the regional government sees handicrafts as an important cultural and economic element for the region and why there are so many initiatives to support the growth of this particular productive sector that can also represent Apulian culture throughout the world.
- Wired Digital Day - Bari, 1 febbraio 2019: aperte le iscrizioni
- Avviso Pubblico per la promozione della Destinazione Puglia rivolto alle Associazioni Dei Pugliesi Nel Mondo
- Expo 2020 Dubai: come diventare partner tecnico del Padiglione Italia
- PES 2: BIAT - Borsa dell'Innovazione e dell'Alta Tecnologia, Bari 11-12 aprile 2019
- BIAT - Borsa dell'Innovazione e dell'Alta Tecnologia, Bari 11-12 aprile 2019 - PROROGA SCADENZA AL 14 GENNAIO 2019
- PES 2: Prowine Hong Kong 2019 - Speciale Piano Export Sud - Hong Kong, 7/10 maggio 2019
- PES 2: Azioni di partenariato in Israele nei settori di alta tecnologia - Tel Aviv 3/6 marzo 2019
- Seminario "Obiettivo Export: Strategia, tecnica e pratica per l'export", LECCE 24/25 gennaio 2019
- PES 2: Fiera AMBERIF - Danzica (Polonia), 20/23 marzo 2019
- PES 2: Workshop alimentare e incontri B2B - Vienna (Austria), 7 marzo 2019