The Casentino Valley is ready to welcome the XXV European Biennial Show of Blacksmithing Art: all of the volunteers of our Association, supported by the entire town of Stia, are already working hard to organise the next edition which will be held from 31 August to 3 September 2023.
The European Biennial Show of Blacksmithing Art in Stia is the most traditional event about Wrought Iron held regularly in Italy since 1976; born from an idea by Pier Luigi della Bordella and Ivan Bruschi, with the fundamental support of Vittoriano Frulloni, who was the Mayor of Stia back then, it is the dean of the Exhibitions of Artistic Crafting of Forged Irons which are held continuously throughout the world.
Over the years, this event has proved to be the most important point of reference in the world of Blacksmithing Art, thus becoming simultaneously an opportunity to make the Casentino Valley known, with the aim of creating a fruitful exchange between culture, craftsmanship and promotion of the Territory.
It is the umpteenth fundamental demonstration of the sensitivity and of the natural predisposition that the people of the Casentino Valley show towards craftsmanship, and the proof, for national and European observers, that Tuscany still remains the cradle of the civilization of artisan work and applied arts.
This Biennial Show has the merit of having continually stimulated the public to show a renewed interest in artistic iron products, summoning to council, every two years, the interpreters of an ancient artisan civilization, giving them the opportunity to meet and to stimulate their creative spirits and to improve their working techniques, thanks to the indispensable transferral of ideas that they can achieve in Stia.
Stia has always opened its doors to both Masters and young blacksmiths from all over the world, gaining the international recognition of “Manifestation Without Borders”, an undisputed showcase of a high quality wrought iron artistic handicraft.
A prodigious commitment with the admirable aim of protecting and enhancing a centuries-old tradition that has been present in the Casentino Valley since the Middle Ages: who does not remember, in Dante’s Divine Comedy, the shrewd Master Adamo da Brescia, perhaps the most skilled forger of the time, who falsified Florins for the family of the Guidi Counts from Romena (whose castle still majestically stands in the Casentino Valley)?
We are talking about wrought Iron in the truest sense of the term and about a craftsmanship which is never indulging too much in showy interventions of excessively advanced technologies.
A tenaciously sustained tutelage, dialectically protected too, of a product which must remain authentic – not a timeless and incorrigible conservatism, but a conscious commitment in an open confrontation in defence of an Art that has recreated a space of its own, leaning towards the needs of the future.
As already pointed out on several occasions, the last editions have marked a point of arrival but, above all, they have marked the starting point towards a future of the Biennial Show which is increasingly linked to the interpenetration of forging, applied arts and design.
This event is flanked by multiple initiatives, including Wool Mill “Empty space_Incubator of Ideas”, “World Forging Championship”, “Pier Luigi Della Bordella International Design Competition”, “International Sculpture Competition”, “Photography Competition”.