“Crafted by Hand. Photo Diary”: a project preserving crafts tradition in Gabrovo

“Crafted by Hand. Photo Diary”: a project preserving crafts tradition in Gabrovo

Sat, 10/01/2022 to Sun, 04/30/2023

With the aim of portraying the essence of local crafts tradition, Gabrovo, a UNESCO Creative City of Crafts and Folk Art, is promoting the project "Crafted by Hand. Photo Diary”.

Over the course of six months, from November 2022 to April 2023, six masters of rare local crafts, their faces, working environment, tools and creative approach will be captured through photographic portraits in one story per month, thus resulting in a photo diary. The aim of this project is to raise awareness of the need to preserve and develop local traditional crafts and artisans.

Through this photographic project, visual artist Rosina Pencheva aims to collect the stories of local craftworkers, who are considered “living human treasures”, as they practise very rare high-level crafts, exercised by no more than ten craftspeople. The selection has resulted in an assortment of different ages and educational backgrounds, including a dry stone waller, a master coppersmith, a master goat hair worker, a master tobacco-pipe maker, an artist bookbinder, and a master luthier.

All the masters participating in the project meet the criteria of authenticity, competence, artisanship and talent, and are willing to teach their techniques. By supporting this project, the city of Gabrovo aims to ensure the continuity of the craft professions and preserve traditions between generations. The project explores the reasons for the disappearance of many crafts and the discontinuity between generations of craftspeople, while also reflecting on the link between crafts and sustainable development.

The result of the project will be presented online to reach a broad audience as well as included in the archives of the Etar Museum in Gabrovo, one of the project's partners.

For more information, please visit: https://rosinapencheva.com/crafted-by-hand-about-the-project

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