Unique artisan experience in Venice. Discover the ancient craft of lost wax and learn how to create your own jewel in the magical context offered by Piazza San Marco.
My name is Valeria Boncompagni and I work as a jeweller and designer in my family store located in Piazza San Marco, the heart of Venice.
I create jewels with the technique of lost-wax. Each piece is eventually finished in metals like gold and silver and often features added precious stones. In Venice, I am known especially for my sculpture rings and pendants, each with a very unique and personal story. In addition to this, in the city, among residents, I am also known for my didactic activity with local children. In fact, one of the things I care the most about is my teaching activity.
I offer both individual workshops in my store, addressed to children, adults and families, and I also teach as a volunteer to children in the local elementary schools. Sharing with others, helping them develop their creative skills and exchanging emotions is incredibly fulfilling for me and I feel grateful for being able to do what I do.
In a way, I could say that it all started by chance. Some years ago when my daughter was still a child, I held a birthday party at our house for her and the grandmother of a friend of hers noticed my wooden work desk and started asking me questions about my job and my passions. In the end, she was so enthusiastic to suggest me to do it in the public school. So, I took her advice and embraced this adventure.
The idea is to plant a seed and hope it will flourish. With children, in general, the relationship is very immediate. I often have the feeling that they can't wait for someone to take them away from those electronic devices and engage them in something practical and creative. They get to use their hands, but also to listen to themselves. The challenge of creating something of their own obliges them to look into themselves deeper and stop for a moment. The same happens with adults in my store.
It is important to slow down and take time to listen to our soul. It may be a difficult practice, but it is very liberating, as we learn new and unexpected aspects about ourselves. The act of creating, having to envision a design, thus wanting to say something, is very enriching and not so easy. My main goal when I share my skill with others, is to help them express themselves and learn to take their time and slow down. The lessons are practical, but it is very easy to get emotional. I think that the atmosphere of the Piazza, being able to look out and see the Basilica and my beloved Palazzo dei Dogi, definitely adds more to the experience, which is fully immersive.
Personally, I try to entail a relationship with all the people I meet along the way. In my boutique too, I don't create just for the sake of it, but because I need to share and get a message through. For example, when a couple orders the Lagoon Wedding Rings, I offer them the possibility to participate in the creation of their jewels, by adding a sign or signature, so they feel involved and are an active party of the ring they will be wearing for the rest of their lives!!!
Anyhow, as for the artisan workshops, the ones I offer in my store are addressed to: individuals of all ages, children (8+ y.o.), and families. The lessons are practical hands-on experiences, with the theoretical aspect explained through practical activities. During our time together, students get to familiarise with the technique of lost-wax, and to shape and draw their own piece, generally a ring or pendant. The workshops can be:
- DAILY WORKSHOPS: which offer an introduction and brief demonstration of this craft and can be done by anyone visiting the city for a brief time; or
- 6-LESSON WORKSHOPS: which offer a more complete experience and allow students to design a jewel from start to finish. At the end of these workshops, students can finish their piece with gold or silver and, upon request, add precious stones (the cost changes depending on the type of finish and stones required).
It is also possible to organise and adapt the workshops according to your specific needs and schedule, thus for example, if you would like to have a fully immersive experience but are staying in Venice only for a short period of time, we can work out a personalised calendar and plan.
The lessons are suited for students of all levels. Most of my students are complete beginners, but I also worked with people who had had previous experiences. The tools and materials are included, whereas -as previously mentioned- the fusing cost and the type of metal finish you require differ and are provided as soon as you decide what type of material and/or stone you would like to add.
I look forward to welcoming you in my workshop in the heart of Venice and sharing with you a magical experience. Please, do not hesitate to contact me for any further enquiry or curiosity you may have.
Valeria Boncompagni Piazza San Marco 130 Venezia (VE) Phone: +39 041 309 7767
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