Artists and Artisans from Northern Portugal (12th – 20th centuries)

This project, funded by FCT, created a database containing the artists and artisans from Northern Portugal, who have worked in this region and in other areas of the Portuguese Speaking World.

In the current panorama of the historiography of the Portuguese art, the inventories of artists and artisans are rare, and the existing ones are faulty. The significant contribution of Master and PhD dissertations in the Art History area, presented and discussed at the Faculty of Arts in Porto, from 1987 onwards, though it might have addressed some questions, it is still not enough in this area.

The project entitled Artists and Artisans from Northern Portugal (12th–20th centuries) aimed at continuing this research, by systematizing and enriching it with the discovery of new data. The geographic scope of this project was the Northern Region of Portugal, limited by the hydrographical basins of Minho and Douro. Northern Portugal - the privileged research area of this team – was, on the other hand, due to the antiquity of its occupation, its population density and due to the importance of its emigration flow, one of the areas in need of a larger investment regarding research.     

Our highly qualified research (fourteen PhDs, twelve Masters and six Brazilian PhD), carried out an exhaustive documentary and bibliographic survey of artists and artisans who worked between the 12th and 20th centuries in Northern Portugal. The importance of the artistic legacy of the area being studied and the volume and diversity of manpower and know-how of this region, as well as the internal and external mobility, within the geographic context of the Portuguese Speaking World (paying special attention to Brazil), require the survey of several participants and their artistic activity.

Thus, this project resulted in an inventory that will be a basic contribution to a better understanding of the Portuguese artistic reality, and the assertion of a taste with its own characteristics that idiosyncratically stands out over time.

This project originated the database Artists and Artisans from Northern Portugal, which is available at www.cepese.pt/portal/investigacao/bases-de-dados/artistas/artistas/mainpage

Coordinator - Natália Marinho Ferreira-Alves