The Taccini family of Vinci, well known in Tuscany, has been making ceramics for the last 500 years . They have major works of art that have left their bottega outside of Vinci, for countries around the globe. I met the 4 Taccini brothers and their father soon after arriving to Tuscany in 1985. Our friendship through the years has brought them a number of times to our home in California including a trip to assemble a large ceramic wall panel of medieval musicians, called, il concerto. This colorful masterpiece, 120 inches in length and 40 inches in height is made of five, 24 x 40 inch panels. Alessandro, the brother who makes most of the objects out of clay, brought the individual panels with him from Italy. He assembled the pieces into one major panel that was placed on the wall of one of our restaurants, their only major work of these dimensions in the USA.
Our family has been particularly involved with Alessandro, the brother whose forte since the age of 10 has been involved with the making of ceramic objects from the Tuscany clay. His brothers usually take over with the painting and firing up the kiln for these works. When arriving with our guests to the Taccini bottega, Alessandro’s hospitality and generous giving of time, is overwhelming. He demonstrates with his deft hands the making of various shaped objects as well as allowing many of our guests to try their skills at making a piece of art. He is always available to give advise and suggestions to the novice artist in our groups. Many have purchased Taccini art from paintings, sculptures, wall hangings as well as a complete set of dishes. I love visiting the bottega not only for the art presented but also for the friendship of the family exuberant with passion for their work. It is sad when questioning if his sons or nephews would continue as ceramic artisans, he answered “no”, explaining that one can teach technique but not the passion that has directed him in life since the age of 10. This will soon become another lost art of yesterday.