Articolo disponibile anche in: Italian
Paola Giuntini, a bubbly 55 year old from Barberino Val d’Elsa, is the only artist in Chianti (and possibly in Tuscany), who creates handmade works of art on silk. Paola discovered her passion and profession by chance.
Since then, starting with the precious raw material, she has been able to make it even more precious. Her expertise and experience, increased by her travels around the world and her creativity make her products unique: beautiful kaftans, scarves, stoles, ties, curtains and pictures… even a wedding dress.
But that isn’t all. In addition to being a vividly colored oasis, “Le sete di Paola” (the name of her shop in Via Francesco da Barberino 21), also has room for handmade cotton and wools… the beautiful universe of fabrics.
“I was born and raised in Barberino”, she says. “Since I was 24, I have followed my husband, a geologist, abroad. The same curiosity I had when meeting people, hearing new languages, learning new customs and cuisine in Congo, encouraged me to attend painting school”.
“As soon as I had pen in hand”, she recounts, “the teacher asked for how long I had been painting. It was the ﬁrst time. But I haven’t stopped since. Every time we left I brought everything with me. I studied, gave courses, created exhibits and learned new techniques”.
“After a trial in 2006”, she continues, “I ofﬁcially opened shop in 2010 and established myself for once and for all. I have a workshop and direct sales here, from Easter to Christmas, with a 10 AM to noon and 4 PM to 7 PM schedule. I also have online sales”.
“With its varying thickness”, she explains, “silk lends itself to many techniques. Batik uses the application of melted wax on the parts that you don’t want to draw on. The color remains. Then you take off the wax with the help of newspapers. “La guta” allows you to make a precise design”.
“For pictures of varying dimensions and types, the process is the same. The difference is that the silk is wrapped around a wooden frame, covered with a layer of cotton. The effect of lights and led lights is suggestive”.
“I use only natural colors,” concludes Paola. “I create forms and shadows with dried leaves, syrups, salt, sugar, and handprints. I am inspired by Africa and its warm tones of nature, but at the same time I listen to the wishes of my clients”.