Description by the artist
The “Sciccareddu” coffa bag is externally covered in dusty gray cloth. The interior, on the other hand, was covered with brown damask fabric, in stark contrast to the exterior.
The decorations are made with cotton and lurex trimmings. The side bag features a hand-painted medallion depicting a “Sciccareddu” donkey.
On the sides of the bag there are two tassels made with the same fabric as the lining of the bag. The inside of the bag has been carefully lined both for the quality of the materials and for the manufacturing.
The artwork in the Sicilian culture
The coffa siciliana is a basket made with the weaving of the curina, the heart of the dwarf palm. The coffa bags were used to put the fodder or bran to give to the horse or donkey, in this case it was tied by the handles to the head of the animal.The coffa was also used by farmers for sowing, while the larger one called zimmili was used to carry the harvest of the day, or the wood to bring home, or even to put inside a small child and keep him warm . This object brings us back to the middle of 1300 when the Aragonese ruled Sicily. A certain Guglielmo Buccheri, a hermit then beatified, was called cuffitedda because he used to carry the coffa over his shoulder. Today, the coffa has become a fashion accessory for women: you can find a folkloristic bag decorated with chimes and mirrors that recalls the harnesses of the horses of Sicilian carts, or embellished with embroidery and lace, it becomes an evening bag.
Photo Sicilian women working silk