The Corpus Domini celebration in Camaiore: artworks or carpets?

Camaiore – village located near Lucca, in the Versilia hinterland – by craftsmen who every year work hard to create the typical “paintings” that represent the heart of this festivity.

The Corpus Domini procession was celebrated since the end of XV century, but it was just during the XIX century – perhaps due to the influence of the Spanish traditions brought by the Borbone family’s servants – that the habit of decorating the streets with carpets made of flowers started; such carpets were aimed to drive the procession passing in the centre of the village. Starting from 30′s, flowers were progressively replaced by sawdust. Today, the carpets are realized with sophisticated and advanced techniques by the so called “tappetari” (the carpets craftsmen), who generally stay awake all the night before the procession (the Saturday before Corpus Domini), managing shapes, colours and nuances till Sunday’s sunrise, when they finish their artworks which are finally ready to be presented to the faithful and to drive their procession. The carpets – that portray complex and refined religious scenes and that can be realized on surfaces of up to 200 mt – are even reason of pride and challenge among the different groups of citizens. During this edition, the groups of people taking part in the event will be awarded with a photo book retracing the history of the ancient tradition of carpets of sawdust in Camaiore.

This year, the Corpus Domini festivity will be celebrated on the 6th of June. Therefore, during the night between 5 and 6 of June, a special event will be organized to accompany the creation of the carpets – that will take place from 8 p.m. of Saturday 5 of June to 10 a.m. of Sunday 6 of June – with choral chants and the participation of several local historians and specialists in the religious field. The procession will take place on Sunday morning, after the celebration of the Mass at 9 o’clock.

For further information and details, look at the official site of Camaiore municipality.

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