Nature & Art
In the summer of 2013, a small group of people in Praiano began an experiment in bulding "social capital" by founding a not-for-profit association called AgendaPraiano.
The goal was to create a community organization that would promote social responsibility, cultural development and ecologically sustainable and “smart” economic growth for their town.
View of Praiano
AgendaPraiano’s first initiative was the development of a "Strategic Plan” for the town, an absolute first. Over the previous three decades, Praiano had grown as part of the tourism boom of nearby Positano and the Amalfi Coast in general, but it had never developed its own identity or tried to shape its future.
Video by Raffaele Cappiello & Michele Iaccarino
The plan involved making Praiano known in the circuit of international cultural destinations as a large open air museum, the same way Ravello is known for its music.
With the support of outside experts and professionals, AgendaPraiano developed the "Praiano NaturArte Project" as the first step toward the strategic repositioning of the town.
On 15 June 2015, the Regional government of Campania, thorugh the Assessorato dei Beni Culturali, announced that the "NaturArte Project" was one of 31 proposals that won a tender for European “structural funds” allocated to finance new cultural tourism initiatives.
A characteristic cultural trait of the town of Praiano is the network of small religious shrines, mini-chapels made of majolica tiles, scattered along the leading pedestrian streets that usually run parallel to the sea flanked by high stone walls, the so-called macere, and the white washed walls of houses. These shrines were built all over town to protect the Praianesi and their homes.
Shrine on via Marconi
The artists were asked to draw inspiration from the past or the local values and traditions and to revitalize and reinforce the concept of "street art" typical of the traditional shrines.
Work by Fausto Lubelli
The artists were also asked to create ceramic installations that would enhance and enrich the natural landscape. Their installations were not supposed to alter the nature and the local “people’s architecture”, but rather to enrich them in harmonious and elegant ways.
Work by Sandro Mautone
The works of art were to be donated to the Praianesi who provided the walls and committed to maintaining them.
Work by Lucio Liguori
The Praiano NaturArte Project consists of eight “art itineraries”. Seven of them have ceramic works (ceramic is a traditional medium in the area) and are made by some of the best and most well-known artists in the area.
Work by Patrizia Marchi
Work by Nando Vassallo
Work by Enzo Caruso
Work by Paolo Sandulli
The eighth itinerary, which leads from town to the convent of Santa Maria in Castro along the woods on the side of the mountain has stone sculptures instead of ceramic works.
Work by Francesco Mangieri, also known as Mao
As in the famous Park Güell in Barcelona, the utopian garden city designed by the great Catalan architect Antoni Gaudi at the beginning of the last century in which ceramics and architecture blend into the surrounding landscape, the ceramic installations of the NaturArte Project are meant to blend with the ancient shrines and the natural beauty of the area creating a unique mix of art and nature, tradition and innovation.
In the course of a century, Park Güell has proved a great success in terms of tourist attraction. The Praiano NaturArte Project hopes to replicate, albeit on a much smaller scale, that success.
The Praiano NaturArte Project was inaugurated on May 21st, 2016. Watch the video of the inauguration made by Raffaele Cappiello & Michele Iaccarino:
You can find out more about every itinerary by clicking here:
➢ Itinerary #1- Francesco Mangieri, known as Mao
➢ Itinerary #2 - Sandro Mautone
➢ Itinerary #3 - Patrizia Marchi
➢ Itinerary #4 - Enzo Caruso
➢Itinerary #5 - Lucio Liguori
➢ Itinerary #6 - Ferdinando Vassallo
➢ Itinerary #7 - Fausto Lubelli
➢ Itinerary #8 - Paolo Sandulli