The Courel or O Courel is another fascinating landscape just about 30 minutes from the casa de flores in the Ribeira Sacra.
Few roads venture along the steep cliffs, specifically along the rio Lor, well known for excellent trout fishing. Stunning views from passes up to 1000 meters (3000 feet) high. Little villages, often abandoned or with few permanent inhabitants are dotted about.
What a great idea to breathe some life back into one of these villages, Vilamor near Folgoso, by organising a feria de artesans. The 1st « Artesans na serra do Courel » took place on the 1st Saturday in June (this year the 5th).
It was a rather cool and foggy morning, nevertheless cars and vans decent, or rather acended into Vilamor, which happens to be on about 750 meters (2200 feet). With pre allocated spaces and help from the local « Asociacion Cultural Fonte do Milagro » the set up went like a breeze.
From ancient traditions to more modern, a great selection was on show, respectively was demonstrated. Felting, wool and textiles – like you can find in Anna’s studio in Christosende Ribeira Sacra – Natural Textiles – glass, painting, a turner for bag pipes, a smithy and many more.
We encountered a very helpful potter from Froxian – the Froxian in Courel – who not only told us where to get great clay and porcelain but also offered to build us a small gas fired oven when we explained that we need to fire the cane tops Barbara is designing and modeling.
So what are cane tops? what are these used for?
The picture below shows a selection. We use a lot of steel rods to support our plants and one can easily forget where they are when the plants grow and one is intend on tending. These tops are decorative and safe you from having your eyes poked accidentally.
We tested a range during more than a year in these climatic conditions, left outside during the winter, we feel we have to fire them so their beauty is preserved.
A big thank you to Carmen, the association and all the people involved. We are sure to return next year, maybe with a bit more sun shine.
And here is the silde show with many more and larger pictures – Vilamor – Feria de Artesania – click sit back – enjoy