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Agata a Trizzota

Shawls Cotton
Single artwork


Description by the artist

“Agata a Trizzota talia lu mari e prega San Giuanni” (Sicilian for Agata of Acitrezza looks at the sea and prays to San Giovanni, the patron saint of Acitrezza). In this work I drew inspiration from the fishermen’s nets. The shawl was worn daily by women who waited for their husbands or children to returned from exhausting fishing trips. Knitted with cotton yarns.

Details and dimensions

Materials: Cotton
Dimensions (cm): Height 140, Width 205
Handcrafted in Sicily

The artwork in the Sicilian culture

By the Governance of Sicilian Artisan Foundation

The Sicilian shawl represents a real icon of our popular costume. Simple in its usually triangular shape, the shawl also recalls the divine triad of Catholicism. Its use, in fact, is particularly linked to religious ceremonies, giving off a strong votive nature. But, above all, here in Sicily the shawl was the symbol of amorous seal. A shawl was the gift that the mother-in-law brought on the day of the official engagement, at least until the first half of the last century. A shawl whose material it was made of was at the same time a symbol of economic position. There were woolen shawls, crocheted, and the richer the weave and the thinner the cotton, the more valuable it was.

Acitrezza is a picturesque seaside village on the eastern coast of Sicily made famous by the writer Giovanni Verga and his fishermen’s. It is dominated by the majestic shape of Mount Etna (3300 meters above sea level) which imperiously embraces this area of Sicily. Just behind its coast there are the beautiful Faraglioni of Acitrezza (or Cyclopean Isles), rocky formations of lava erupted 500 thousand years ago. Legend has it that Polyphemus, the one-eyed giant who captured Ulysses and his companions, killed the shepherd boy Aci with one of these stacks because, as always!, of a beautiful young lady, the nymph Galatea, loved by both.  Moved to compassion, Zeus transformed the shepherd boy Aci into a river so that when he went to sea he could eternally unite with the nymph Galatea. The fishermen of Acitrezza are famous throughout Sicily and those boats, illuminated at night, look like stars at the bottom of the sea, off the coast of the village.

(photo) A Sicilian woman, 1915

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