The Apulian start-ups created within the Craft Lab project were presented at the 84. Fiera del Levante in Bari as part of the Cooperation Day initiative, promoted by the Interreg Greece-Italy Programme.

Craft Lab offered the opportunity to 60 young artists, artisans and designers (30 in Italy and 30 in Greece) to combine tradition and innovation with entrepreneurial opportunities. Thanks to the skills acquired within the project and the residences held in Grottaglie, Martina Franca and Gravina di Puglia, the three initiatives oriented to the enhancement and reconversion in a contemporary key of the creative excellence of the territory will be born. Mosaic, fabric and ceramic are in fact the three starting sectors, with the aim of making design and artistic craftsmanship an asset for development and economic growth of the territories involved.

Five artists, designers and artisans form the startup LabArt32 which recovers waste materials from companies in the area to create innovative mosaic tiles, then applied to upcycling design furnishings repurposed with a new functionality.

The young artists, artisans and designers of the Le Moire company, which takes the Greek name of Parche, work in the textile sector. The group produces clothes and accessories inspired by the Mediterranean and Magna Graecia, “areas historically linked by a common past, through the use of fabrics and weaving”, they explain. With these premises, they will create garments with applicable and interchangeable elements chosen by the customer, who will be able to create, starting from a basic line, a custom suit with recycled or loom-woven fabrics. The production activity will be accompanied by an experiential activity, with courses and events intended to pass on stories and practices of the textile tradition.

From the ceramic laboratory of the Craft Lab project comes the CAVE Studio project, which takes its name from the morphology of the city of Grottaglie. The group, engaged in ceramic design, will create artistic and commissioned products, mixing tradition with the use of new technologies. Sustainability, large-scale projects and networking activities between local and international artisans are among the main objectives of CAVE Studio, which also proposes an experiential activity with exhibitions, meetings etc. “CAVE Studio is a ceramic studio that aims to investigate through ceramic craftsmanship new expressive languages related to the production of original design objects that embraces various areas of clay medium and intends to return unique products and experiences to the private and collective public”, explain the protagonists.