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1.12.2013

notes from Granada: a modern Geppetto


On Christmas Eve, my good friend Alberto Granados  posted about a wonderful shop of handmade toys and its maker: a modern Geppetto.  The child in me gazed, nose pressed firmly to the glass, into this marvelous world of handmade wooden toys that move and fly and sing and kiss.  Alberto (and Paco Munoz, the artisan) has graciously permitted me to steal a few images and share them here with you, my blogging friends!

As Alberto writes:
" This modern Geppetto creates trains, planes, wheels and carousels, puzzle pieces to fit, clocks and calendars, bowling as soldier, trucks and in recent years is specializing in automation: a doctor who gives a cardiac massage to her patient , a series of blocks that make up and down a few balls until they return to the starting point for a slide, a pianist who plays a score of blues, a robot, animals that slide ramps, a couple who turns his head to be passionate kisses, a rower that moves your boat ..."
~ from " Wood, more wood"

a plane I'd dearly love to fly !!

No plastic, no metal, no mass production.  Each piece dreamed and lovingly crafted by furniture designer Francisco Munoz and his team of artisans.  I was especially enthralled by a piece Alberto describes as a 'doll church' - a church built much like a dollhouse ....... but not just ANY church, oh no:

"It is quite peculiar, beneath a universe that includes several priests, a sacristan, several altar boys, the faithful and a preacher, an organist, a choir singing ......."

 (the priest moves, the altar boy sways, the officiant blesses)

 and beneath it all, in delicious allegorical irony .....


"... appears as a witty antithesis, a basement where sits a hilarious Hell divided into two areas: bankers and politicians."
  I would like to add 'lawyers' to that basement tableau !!  However, considering Spain's current state of affairs, bankers and politicians are 'spot on' for Hell.  So, next time you are in the neighborhood of beautiful Granada, Spain, stop by Geppetto's workshop ......


.... wander through this magical world, and have a coffee with my friend Alberto who will tell you where all the best food, music, art, literature and toys can be found in Granada, Spain !!  Tell him I send 'a thousand kisses ..........'


Mil besos, Alberto y muchas gracias !!

xxx

18 comments:

soubriquet said...

Oh perfect!
I would spend all my money...
I want to fly that plane too.
When you're a kid, all that is so real, so magically real, you are empowered, you have control over the fickle world, you experiment with your ideas of grown ups, with their power and freedom, nobody telling you "It's time for bed".

Somewhere, somewhere, I have a guide to an exhibition by a yorkshire artist who makes automata, where you turn the handle, and the lion.... puts his head bravely into the trainer's gaping mouth!
Ships are swallowed by whales, a statue on a column swipes with his sword at circling pigeons.

Alberto Granados said...

I've just sent the link to the magic carpenter, the modern Geppetto. I hope he'll be glad to see you mention him in USA.

Regards from Granada, Spain.

AG

My blog is neary dead: no activity in those last months. Now I'm thinking of a new project: Granada remembers its things, a new blog about the commemorative plaques in our city.

J Cosmo Newbery said...

Beautiful! Absolutely beautiful!

red dirt girl said...

Soub ~ a man after my own heart !! I think it is still magically real to me when I immerse myself in such a place. These 'toys' are in truth works of art as you point out. I'd love to see a pirate ship ship complete with masts and rigging and buccaneers and mermaids ...

xxxxx

red dirt girl said...

Dear Alberto!

Thank you again for allowing me to 'steal' your blog post. Indeed, I hope Sr. Munoz is pleased ... or at least, not worried that I've posted his work here on my blog. Tell him to set up an internet shop to sell internationally ....these toys are magnificent !!

Blogs and bloggers come and go. I would hate to see you leave the blogging world. Or maybe it is that you are too busy living a beautiful life to waste hours on the internet ;-)

Your idea about the commemorative plaques sounds so intriguing. I would love to see / read them. Granada has great history!!

warm regards,
xxx

red dirt girl said...

Aren't they though, Cosmo! I think everyone has a child in them that would love to wander through this shop.

xxx

red dirt girl said...

Note: a 'ship ship' is an extra~special sort of pirate ship ...:)

xxx

Adullamite said...

I want that plane too!

Lee said...

Marvellous creations. There's something special about wood...

Lin said...

I love the sense of humor in his work. The church is priceless.

goatman said...

My grandfather used to collect mechanical contrivances which did various funny things -- he was easy to buy for. A tool and die maker by trade, he appreciated the linkages, movements , and whirrings of the "toys".
One was a goofy monkey with a red fez on his head, which would shake a canister with two tiny dice inside then spill them out onto a small green pad in front of him. I am still not sure of the significance of the fez?

He also had a wooden bullshit grinder but that is a story for another day!

red dirt girl said...

Adullamite ~ you will have to share :)

xxx

red dirt girl said...

I've always loved wooden toys. They tend to be the ones I've saved for my children's future 'little feet.'

xxx

red dirt girl said...

I do like those older toys that whirred and clicked and dropped coins into banks. As for the monkey/fez connection ... haven't found anything definitive yet (organ grinders' monkeys wore fez hats and collected coins in them) - but THIS IS FUNNY:

http://www.smokinfezmonkeys.com/fun_history.html

xxx

red dirt girl said...

Hi Lin!

So do I! So do I !!

xxx

goatman said...

You've outdone myself with the link. I especially like:
"Of historical import is the onlooker, the forgotten fez monkey's financially dependent partner, who at that moment was conceiving the notion of life insurance."
I must tell Ginny ~~

Alberto Granados said...

I've done: http://granadablogs.com/granadarecuerdasuscosas/

Regards,

AG

red dirt girl said...

wonderful !!
xxx