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Stefano Basso

Stefano Basso

"I most enjoy the challenge of creating a fine and delicate hand-woven textile with excellent Peruvian materials and skilled artisan hands."

"I was born in Valdagno Vicenza, Italy in 1956. I've always been tempted by the world of fashion. I'm passionate about... art and design, and I wanted to be a part of the process of turning threads and fibers into apparel. In the beginning, it was very difficult and I took some jobs I didn't enjoy. But each one brought me a bit closer to the work I do today.

"I first visited Lima in 2008 after being invited by a group of miners from Cajamarca. At the time, I was the director of the school of arts and crafts in Vicenza and wanted to pursue a project to develop crafts in Latin America.

"In 2009, I returned when I was invited to exhibit 'The Jeweler's Creativity' in the Peruvian Jewelers' Congress. I had fallen in love with the country and realized the latent potential in Peru's developing crafts and the talented artisans who create them.

"While I was the director of an arts and crafts school in Italy, I worked with many European Union projects in Latin America. We sent teachers to a number of different countries. This resulted in a brainstorm of creative ideas, and was just what I needed to give me the confidence to carry out my personal projects. It was — without a doubt — a big push. I had to travel constantly.

"Our materials are quite difficult to work with. We use royal baby alpaca, which is the finest alpaca fleece available, as it is less than 19 microns in diameter. We also use vicuña, considered by many to be the finest natural fiber in the world, as well as Peruvian pima cotton with its fine, long fibers. All present a challenge when woven by hand on a traditional floor loom.

"What I most enjoy the most about my work is the challenge of creating a fine and delicate handwoven textile with excellent Peruvian materials and skilled artisan hands. This is how we achieve such high quality results that are almost impossible to copy.

"I'm convinced that we'll be able to create woven apparel and textiles that will be recognized around the world. I love to create and challenge my capabilities. I also study the ancient weaving techniques that seem to disappear when new technology emerges.

"My inspiration comes from the places I've visited and what I've read about the arts while traveling along this long path of creativity, visiting museums and craft shows, and observing nature. I'm very grateful for the opportunity you have given me to present my apparel. I consider my creations to be of excellent quality and now, I can present the best of my work and Peru's culture."
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