Arts & crafts in Alta Badia
The craft of fine woven fabrics and ornamental woodwork
The origins of the crafts in our region date back to those early times when the valley's first inhabitants gave up their nomad roots and became farmers and thus, permanently settled in the valley. The farming families that lived very remotely had to sustain themselves. They produced their own food, but also yarn, fabrics and utensils. Farming just about ensured survival for many farmers so the men often went to the neighbouring regions to work there and earn the livelihood for their families at home.
They were smart and creative and swiftly, they learned different trades. In winter, when they were not working on the meadows and fields, they exercised various crafts.
Some of the craftsmen from that time were, as already mentioned, also travelling craftsmen. They travelled from farm to farm to offer their services. For example, the weavers who moved from farm to farm to work the wool and linen that the farmers produced. Not only were they skilled craftsmen, they were also artists and researchers and soon their artefacts became internationally recognized works of art.
Over time and in the course of modernisation, different activities emerged, whereas some traditional crafts such as coopers, carders or tanners have since disappeared. Old images and the names of the village parts where they once had their shops bear testimony to them.
Thanks to their technical skills, crafts turned into veritable works of art. Ladin handicrafts developed. In Alta Badia, it was mainly woodwork (the ornamental chests are well known up to today) and fine woven fabrics. Thanks to their creativity and precision, the Ladin craftsmen created pieces of high quality which are, up to this day, renowned far beyond the borders of our land.