Art Antic L’Alcora is a company from Castellon, situated in that village of the region of L’Alcalaten. It was founded in 1999, it has now a days nine workers, and this year it was awarded with the National Prize of Crafmanship 2013 “because of its complex and exclusive pieces destined to the interior design and the sculpture, in which they achieve to combine vanguard and tradition.
We talk with the people in charge, María Jesús Ten and Salvador Negre.
How and when does the company born? In 1999 we started our career, focused on the reproduction of exact ceramic of the 18th century, based on varnished tiles in 10×10 and 13×13 format in classic colours. Taking into account the market demands, in 2000 we incorporated new formats and colours more contemporary and in 2002 we started specialising in the craftmanship production of decorative figures like friezes or special hand-painted pieces.
In 2006 we went beyond this, with the fabrication of exclusive products of porcelain in multiple colours, reliefs, metallic varnishes, reactives etc. Since then and until now, we haven’t stopped innovating and increasing our product range with and average of 15 to 20 novelties each year, that include ceramic claddings, tiles and clay floors, ceramic posters, multi-piece murals of big format or particular orders. In this last year another products such as dinner services, walls in low relief, ceramic sculptures or trophies or commemorative nameplates have been acquiring more importance.
How would you define the product that you offer? Ceramic vanguard products hand-made and following craftsmanship techniques. Art L’Antic l’Alcola also comercialices its product abroad and it is integrated, with help of interior designers and national and international architectural studios, in projects of design and fame all over the world. The most distinguished attention should be drawn to the collaborations made with artists such as Juan Ripollés – Arts of the Comunitat Valenciana Prize in 2000 – interior designers as Lázaro Rosa-Violán – from Contemporain Studio- , or international architectures as the Chilean Studio Pezo Vonn Ellrichshausen, just like some hotel and restoration chains and also franchises and stores from the Inditex Group. With views to a more international future, in the last years we have been taking part in the most important international ceramic and decoration fairs, such as Cevisama (Valencia), Mosbuild (Russia), Cersaie (Bologna, Italy), Coverigns (Orlando and Miami, United Status) and Casapasarela (Madrid). What is more, commercial ties also have been gaining international importance with the recent opening of points of sale in India and Palestine.
Apart from the commercialization of your products, the work of Art Antic include other fields, like restoration. Which are the main projects that you are participating in or you have participated? Despite the new lines of product that we have open in the last years, we keep realising the projects that marked our beginnings, and between them, there are the restoration Works. In them, our artisans combine the last technology with the traditional technique, which allows to truly reproduce any design. Amongst these projects we can highlight some of them like the restoration made with pieces that were more than a hundred years in Molí de l’Alcora, the tile restoration of in the Palace of the sub-delegation of the Government of the Canary Islands o the tile restoration and conservation in old country houses.
What have lead to suppose for you the National Craftmanship Prize 2012? The National Craftmanship Prize means an important award for our daily work and effort to preserve and spread traditional values in such an industrialized sector and also overcrowded as it is the ceramic. We can also highlight the possibilities that the prize offers to new applications and products.
The artisan sector of Spain and in the Valencian Community will be reinforced or weaken from this crisis? The artisan sector has never been an easy market, and it has always required a big effort and dedication by its own nature. Because of this, people who work on it are used to fight each day to keep going and to fit with the rest of companies. Crisis like this one force us to overcome ourselves and to be more creative, developing new products and listening carefully to markets to offer what it is demanding. In this way and being positive, we can say that creativity and innovation have been reinforced.
Are you working on a new product now? Our team is working every day on creating new and innovative products.