The 83rd International Handicrafts Trade Fair was presented in the Sala d’Arme at Palazzo Vecchio on Thursday, 22nd November 2018.
600 exhibitors, many of whom participating for the first time inside an exhibiting area of 55,000 square metres, will meet at a totally transformed Fair, under the aegis of the most excellent artefacts exhibited and no longer lasting 12, but 8 days (April 24 – May 1, 2019).
“Florence and real craftsmanship have always been closely linked with each other, that is why we are lucky to have professionals capable of producing unique artistic techniques relying on their innovation and creativity. From this year on, Firenze Fiera represents a platform to relaunch the development of beautiful handmade products thanks to this new Fair. We can make this, since we are in Florence – a city which, for its legacy and vocation, will once again be the Italian and international reference point for these arts and crafts”, said Leonardo Bassilichi, President of Firenze Fiera.
“We worked with Firenze Fiera and the world of Florence arts & crafts to relaunch and reposition the International Handicrafts Trade Fair. That is why we decided to present the new edition of the Fair along with the work done so far for Florence’s candidature as UNESCO Creative City for Arts & Crafts”, added Cecilia Del Re, Councillor for Tourism & Economic Development of the Florence Municipality.
The guests of honour will be the best artisan companies of Florence and Tuscany, but also many new features such as enhanced tailor-made productions and live demonstrations, the space given to digital crafts and makers, educational activities and meetings with the protagonists of arts & crafts and design.
Another feature will be the project named “Del mestiere di Leonardo: immaginare, progettare e realizzare il futuro” (Leonardo’s Trade – Imagining, Planning and Making the Future), exploring new development models in parallel with artisans and designers, curated by Fondazione Architetti Firenze and Fondazione Giovanni Michelucci.
The Fair will go beyond the Fortezza and inside the city, with manufactures open to the public, installations and events in squares. The 2019 edition will get even more social, involving bloggers and the same digital artisans, the real protagonists of a new community.
The partnership with destinationflorence.com, the official portal promoting and commercialising the Florence cultural and tourist offer, will allow targeted promotional activities for Italian and international tourists, including tours of the main museums and attractions of the city. Moreover, the Fair will be promoted by sector professionals with timetabled B2B and B2C events.
To guarantee the reinvention and repositioning work for this Fair, a Scientific Committee of sector experts was created. The Committee is formed by: Andrea Aleardi (Director of the Fondazione Michelucci), Jean Blanchaert (applied arts art dealer), Carlo Francini (UNESCO manager for the Municipality of Florence), Elisa Guidi (Director of Artex), Maria Pilar Lebole (Manager of OMA, Osservatorio mestieri d’arte), Alberto Nespoli and Domenico Rocca (interior architects from EligoStudio and ambassadors of the well-made). The Scientific Committee is coordinated by Massimo Torrigiani (curator and founder of Boiler creative agency).