In the heart of Puglia, in the Taranto area, you can find the stunning village of Grottaglie. The name Grottaglie comes from the Latin Cryptae aliae (a lot of ravines). The land has a real ravine system that has offered repair and rest to men since ancient times.
“The city of ceramics”, Grottaglie, is well known because of its thousand-year-old ceramic tradition. The ceramic art works created here are shipped all over the world, but it’s not the only city in Apulia with ceramic tradition.
Continue to read to find out more!
Grottaglie ceramics became famous worldwide : since the Middle Ages, clay is shaped to create pottery.
Formerly it was “functional pottery”, really different from the ornamental one of nowadays.
If you come to Grottaglie you will find the “District of ceramics”: a magic district full of artisans letting the clay run through their fingers (with the same passion as Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore in Ghost).
There you can find more than 50 crafts shops built inside real caves!
The local artisans teach the art to the students who will become the artisans of tomorrow.
And if you want to have a special experience with the potter masters, click on the video below created for AuthenticPugliaTours.
Isn’t it amazing?
Tradition of ceramic trumpets in Grottaglie
In the old town of Grottaglie, on the 29 of June, during the celebration of ST. Peter and ST. Paul, you can see a secular tradition, the so-called “Festa delle Trombe” (Trumpets celebrations).
During this celebration, in the ST. Peter’s Church, the citizens play and then destroy pottery trumpets: this way, according to tradition, evil, illnesses and debts were strayed.
Not only Grottaglie: ceramics in Puglia
So Grottaglie is known all over the world for its ceramics but did you know that there are a lot of other places in Puglia with ceramics traditions?
In the same province (of Taranto) there is Laterza, known for the figula art, in particular for the artistic majolica from the XVII-XVIII century.
The MUMA – Museo della Maiolica preserves some examples of majolica art, that nowadays inspires some craft shops.
Cutrofiano is the epicenter of figula art and handmade pottery in the Salento area, 30km from Lecce (his name comes from the “cutrubbi”, clay pots).
In the municipal library there is the Museo della Ceramica, in which you can find local craftspeople’s works.
Furthermore, Rutigliano, near Bari, is known worldwide for pottery art.
Every year, in January, they celebrate this art here with the “Fiera del Fischietto”.
In the same Bari area, there is Ruvo di Puglia, known for his pottery art and especially for the “Collezione Jatta”, consisting of more than 800 objects.
This collection from 1993 is in the National Museum (formerly was in a private museum).
How to go:
From Bari to Grottaglie:
- 1h and 35 minutes crossing State Road SS16
- 1h and 35 minutes crossing State Road SS100
- 2 h and 5 minutes with MARINO AUTOLINEE (timetables available on the official website)
- 2h and 23 minutes with Ctp Trasporti Pubblici Locali Spa (timetables available on the official website)
- 1h and 6 minutes with TRENITALIA (timetables available on the official website)
While the artisans are taking a break to lunch, take a packed lunch and enjoy the breathtaking view of the city center.
Do you want to discover some curiosities about Grottaglie? Click to know #5FunFacts about this magic city!
And if you want any information about your trip to Puglia, contact us!
See you in Puglia!
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