The Sicilian cart between history, passion and sacrifices

The Sicilian cart between history, passion and sacrifices 1203 800 Dimora delle Balze


The Sicilian cart between history, passion and sacrifices

January 15, Ragusa Ibla

“The old masters were jealous of their craft and many times it was difficult to extrapolate the exact formula, but with sacrifice and patience you learned”.

The Sicilian cart is an ancient tradition, dating back to the early 1800s, when the carters – proud travelers – earned their living by transporting goods on behalf of others. It was the profession of the people, born in a period of misery, made of sacrifices and dedication.

The Sicilian cart is unique in its kind. Once it was an essential asset of a Sicilian man and from a simple traction cart with a coarse shape, over the years it took on a more refined appearance, able to attract the gaze of passers-by. For over 150 years it has fascinated young people and housewives who rush to the windows at every step.

“The art imprinted on the carts is not mine by chance, it is a study of professional artisans for generations, who have managed to get the right balance between bright colors and iconography. It is the true pride of the carter, who like a hero faced the daily bad weather traveling long distances”.

The art of painting carts, as well as their construction was passed down by word of mouth. “We were lucky enough to learn from the last master,” says Damiano Rotella, who along with Biagio Castilletti are the last artisans, founders of Cinabro Carrettieri. “We started out as garzoni in Domenico Di Mauro’s workshop,” “the mastro would test you and if you had potential you could work with him.”

Today all the old mastersĀ  have passed away, but “the art of the cart still exists,” so much so that even Dolce and Gabbana choose to use its safe formula in their creations “we just have to be careful that it doesn’t pollute.”

Credit to : Cinabro Carrettieri