Sevillian Sacred Workshops
Experience the essence of the Holy Week
Seville is one of the most important religious centers in the world and every year its Holy Week Festival congregates unconditional lovers of sacred art from all Christendom. But the city is also one of the last places where we can still find artisan workshops focused on these holy arts during the whole year. Authentic, timeless studios which have vanished from most of our modern world. This experience is like a journey to the 18th century, the Golden Age of the city, and allows to discover the secrets of a millenarian tradition.
During this private tour, you will visit three different traditional workshops where you will meet the artisans: sculpture, gold leaf artwork and sacred embroidery.
Some say that the Seville Holy Week is for the sacred art what the Carnival of Rio is for the profane, i.e. celebrations and insurmountable summits that must be visited at least once in life.
The origin of the Holly Week is relatively complex and has to do with the economic cycles of the city. When Seville was rich, art workshops flourished, and artists came to the city from all corners of the country. Thus, in the first two decades of the Spanish Golden Age, the trade that had been established with the Americas led to the opening of new workshops. It is precisely during this time when most important baroque sculptures were built, the same ones which continue to be devoted nowadays on the main processions of Seville’s Holy Week.
From an artistic and spiritual point of view, the masterworks of artists such as Martinez Montañes or Juan de Mesa represent the climax of Spanish religious baroque. This same southern Baroque originates from a much older spiritual trend in which there was no shortage to intervene in the hermetic guidelines that marked Spanish art. These ideas were transmitted as a secret by word of mouth between teachers and disciples. In this current we find a vision of the Redeemer impregnated with deep humanity and sweetness, in stark contrast to the ascetic and redemptive visions that flourished further north.
Our program aims to return to the essence by visiting to some traditional workshops that represent, the backbone of the artistic and religious Soul of the city.
First, the sculpture art, which maintains the tradition born in the 17th century in a unique worldwide creative context. In the historic center of Seville, new workshops appear regularly either in isolated premises or in small communities of artisans installed in the same spaces.
The craftsmanship with golden leaves is also a rare art in the world. It allows the permanent creation of altarpieces with sculptures which maintain the richness of the adornment as a symbol of sacredness and respect.
The sacred embroidery may be the least known craft, but not the least exciting. The realization of processional mantles is an enormous work full of devotion that deserves to be discovered.