Fontanini
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House of Fontanini Heirloom Nativity



 

 

House of Fontanini Heirloom Nativity
Since 1908, the House of Fontanini has created magnificent old-world sculptures treasured by collectors and revered by worshippers all over the world. Today, Emanuele, Alessandro, Luca, Marco, and Stefano Fontanini are the fourth generation to lead the celebrated House of Fontanini in the village of Bagni di Lucca, Italy, where it was founded nearly a century ago. Priding themselves on "Building Family Traditions", these young men are honored to follow in the footsteps of their fathers, grandfather, and great-grandfather. Breathtaking in detail and workmanship, Fontanini Nativities are comprised of lifelike figures and historically researched structures in eight different sizes that together present an extraordinary step back in time to Biblical Bethlehem.

The family patriarch and company founder Emanuele Fontanini, embarked on his career of figurine crafting in 1893 as a talented 13-year-old apprentice to an artist in Bagni di Lucca, an area of Tuscany known for its great arts and crafts. Fontanini expanded his knowledge and skills in art through his travels to European cities. He returned to Bagni di Lucca to launch his company in 1908, using money earned from the sale of his wares throughout the continent. Although no longer artists themselves, the fourth generation of the Fontanini Family continues the tradition of crafting the eloquent Nativities and figures.

Working with the finest painters and sculptors in Tuscany, Fontanini began crafting figures and decorations of heirloom quality in a single room shop. In time, the House of Fontanini gain recognition and acclaim for its work and Fontanini's sons, Ugo, Mariano, and Pier became the third generation to head up the rapidly growing enterprise. The family's fourth generation is taking the House of Fontanini into the 21st Century. Today, the namesake of his great grandfather Emanuele along with Stefano, Marco, Luca, and Alessandro have assumed the leadership roles. Founder and family patriarch Emanuele died in 1977 at the age of 97 with the House of Fontanini well established and ready for continued growth.

It was fitting that the House of Fontanini would distinguish itself as the premier designer and maker of heirloom quality Nativities and figures; for it was in another Italian village - hundreds of years earlier - that St. Francis of Assisi introduces the celebration of Christ's birth with the "Living Nativity". It is also the custom of Italian families to sculpt figures of people from all walks of life as they pay homage to the newborn King. Fontanini focuses on this illustrious heritage and devotes both talent and skills to the production of the Fontanini Heirloom Nativity Collection.