Outstanding Craftsmanship in Lombardy The need to promote quality Artistic Craftsmanship and make it the focal point of cultural and commercial circuits is becoming increasingly apparent on several fronts. In many Regions, increasingly qualified events are getting underway (such as the recent XIX Biennial of Sardinian Craftsmanship), often following in the footsteps of models I proposed between the Eighties and Nineties. In doing so they are promoting a vital encounter between the culture of design and the culture of making things. The Regional Authorities of Lombardy have recently given backing to various projects, including “Artis” (a project to valorise Lombardy’s Artisans of Excellence) and “Deco’” (a competition that has put young designers in touch with Lombard artisan businesses). It has also staged exhibitions that showcase Lombardy’s artisans, from traditional crafts (such as the exhibition entitled “Lombard ceramics. Time-honoured
excellence” staged to mark the occasion fo MACEF in spring 2009) to more contemporary ones (with the recent exhibition entitled “The-sign” organised by Dalia Gallico and held in the San Paolo Cultural Centre in Brazil). All of which are projects promoted by the Councillorship for Artisans and Services of Lombardy’s Regional Authorities. In addition, large and small exhibitions have been held in recent years, both in institutional premises and in a number of galleries which have come forward, as they increasingly identify themselves with the Applied Arts. On what was once defined a no-man’s land and left fallow for many years, seeds are now being sown. Events such as the exhibitions on Cantù lace work, Miniartextil at Como and the Biennial of Applied Arts at Boario Terme have opened up a way featuring a new form of communication which also sees the involvement of private Galleries such as Rossana Orlandi, Dilmos, Colombari, Fatto ad Arte, Magenta 52 and Luisa Delle Piane. All of which provides tangible proof of the
fact that attention on excellence and commercial interests is on the rise, leading more and more new collectors towards this type of work, not to mention the institutions who no longer limit themselves to just backing general Craftsmanship as a whole (such as the book “Ad Arte” on outstanding artistic craftsmanship produced by Cestec and Lombardy’s Regional Authorities). The enthusiasm then is tangible. The “off-Fair” events at the spring appointment with the Salone del Mobile furniture fair, and those held within “Artigiano in Fiera”, will be providing two opportunities for the public to participate on a large scale. Of course there is still a long way to go and much to be done. In particular I am referring to the editorials of an important magazine that is still to be produced, the successful Biennial of Applied Arts, active Museums and a market that will finally give value to our often “hidden” craftsmanship of excellence. For now we can look to the future with a reasonable amount of optimism, and hope that next Christmas will bring us the gift of new initiatives.
brand new number of Artigianato tra arte e deisgn