Val Gardena - Dolomites
Val Gardena is one of the five Ladin valleys in the Dolomites.
Enclosed by the mountain ranges of the Sella group, Sassolungo and Sassopiatto groups, Odle group, and the Alpe di Siusi and despite the massive tourist exploitation to which it is subject, Val Gardena still retains many of its traditions and characteristics. The most internationally known tradition is certainly that of wood carving, an activity practiced and consistently evolving for centuries in the valley.
Over 400 years ago, the peasant populations of Val Gardena began to carve tools, household objects and toys during the long winter months. The necessary raw material, wood, was conveniently available in the surrounding forests. The production of objects of daily use made the populations independent on one hand, and on the other, opened the doors to commerce. The carved products soon began to be successful and sold in the surrounding markets. This provided the farmers of Val Gardena with a second source of income in addition to the high-altitude pasture economy, which could only be practiced in the short summer months.
Creativity, faith and dedication finally led the inhabitants of the valley to better form their knowledge of wood carving and to create religious and profane artistic artifacts. The inauguration of the art school in the 19th century was a step that aimed at transforming Val Gardena from an agricultural valley into a valley of sculptors, artists, wood carvers and craftsmen which was accomplished. Unlike agriculture, still marginal in the valley today, the tradition and trades of woodworking are still very present in almost all the families of the valley.
Discover the important testimonies of the history and traditions of Val Gardena on the Franco Online Shop and decorate your home with these unique works of art.