|Forget the Ponte Vecchio and the Duomo, shoe lovers from around the world are descending on the Italian city of Florence to learn the art of shoemaking. (CNTV)|
Forget the Ponte Vecchio and the Duomo, shoe lovers from around the world are descending on the Italian city of Florence to learn the art of shoemaking.
Florence - a city famed for its renaissance paintings and architecture.And in this small workshop another art - shoemaking - is being rediscovered , with students like Bukola from Nigeria flocking to the Riaci Academy to learn the trade.
Nigerian student Bukola Asafa said, "I actually always wanted to make shoes you know and I just thought where is the best place to learn how to make shoes if not Italy? I’ve learnt so much in just 6 weeks and I cant’ wait to go back home and do what I’ve learnt."
There are just six students in this class.Yet the only Italian on the eight-week course -- which costs around 5,00 Euro -- is Daniele Ortolani, he’d been repairing shoes for eight years before deciding to learn how to make them.
Daniele Ortolani, Italian student, said, "I feel a bit special, yes, unique and I hope to pursue my career in spite of the difficulties artisans met, at the very least - in Italy."
The course is run by master cobbler Angelo Imperatrice, who learnt (the) shoemaking from his uncles. At 75 years old he’s seen the industry change dramatically and (he has seen much in his time but) today bemoans Italian bureaucracy that he says is destroying his trade.