Sunday, June 29, 2014

Rimini Afternoons - Faenza

Faience Plate Garofano.jpg
"Faience Plate Garofano". Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.5 via Wikimedia Commons.

Diane, before we left made a tiny little post-it with side trips.  One of them was the town of Faenza, which is known for ceramics.  There are over 40 ceramics workshops in Faenza and some big production houses as well.  Through the power of the internet we sifted through workshops and settled on two that looked like they would have some fun stuff.

The first shop that we stopped at: was run by an Italian woman with really pretty fantastic English.  When we first walked through the door, it was a pure workshop and I was really wondering whether we were going to be successful in our hunt for artifacts. That was until she walked us upstairs, where she had a massive collection of bowls - score!

Ms. Vignoli's art centers around two techniques: copper reduction, and hand painting with both a fine liquid slip as well as with glaze.  She showed us her kiln which was covered in jet black residue and explained that in order to reduce copper, you add sugar and alcohol when the kiln is very hot.  The reduction turns blue-green copper (right plate) to beautiful hues of iridescent red and orange (left plate). You can also see the very thin slip on the right plate that they pipe onto the surface to create texture.

Ms. Vignoli was happy to say that her designs were about to come to the US market, which she was quite excited about.  She wondered if we knew of a store called Home Goods......she also told us that she produced some place settings for Dior, which was an interesting dichotomy.  Our wallets a little lighter, we left to find the other workshop which was only a short walk away.

Side Note - Never use google maps in Italy, it sucks.  Waze = the shit.

We got over to this random industrial park and tried knocking on the door, and no one seemed to answer, we were a little disappointed until we saw the small bell next to the door.  We rang, and another warm Italian woman with great English came to the door.

She works in porcelain (rare in Faenza) and creates work inspired by creatures of the sea (and other delightfully creepy stuff).  We found lots of stuff that we wanted to bring home, and were happy for our emergency checking duffle for extra clothes :-)

There was a small fiasco when she realized she had forgotten her credit card reader at home, so we had to go and find an ATM, but it all worked out in the end.

We were definitely very happy that we had rented the car because otherwise we would have never made it on any of these great side trips.

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