We wanted to start an Italian collection but where to start when you only have some 10 days! Well, we figured 1st stop:  Sicily,  because it’s rightly the flavour of the month after White Lotus' success and because we have friends and relatives living there. The second destination on the whirlwind Italian collection stop, Rome. Throughout history to the current day, it is a global bastion of the arts as a higher calling! On the more mundane level of hunting for artisans, Rome seemed to be a logical hunting ground.

We approached Rome with an open mind…let's look around and see what the local artisans have on offer. Sicily, well, it’s hard not to think of beautiful ceramics but there was a real concern that the beautiful Moorish heads may have become a little ’kitch’ perhaps….they are wonderfully Sicilian and also very colourful but we felt what might look divine on a Bougainvillea draped whitewashed wall overlooking the Mediterranean Sea frankly might be a tad over the top in most houses. The question we put to ourselves - could we find pieces more austere?  

Suffice to say that White Lotus has Sicily awash with Moorish Heads and we had almost given up seeing as most shops catered to tourists. On the very last day we discovered 2 separate superb Sicilian artisans. Equally Rome, whilst dripping in tourist trinkets and magnificent public art everywhere, was a needle in a haystack exercise of finding those pieces raised far above the ordinary. We had success via a gallery that had sold nothing but the famous ‘Murano’ name since the 60’s….

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