Portuguese Textile Industry - Set
Portuguese Textile Industry - Set for only GBP £2.56
While domestic textile production has existed in Portugal since immemorial times, the Portuguese textile industry more broadly has been bound up in each successive paradigm shift to have emerged in the Western world: from the textile societies dating from the birth of the nation in the 12th century to the 17th century; to the manufacturing and mercantile paradigms of the 17th and 18th centuries; to the three industrial revolutions dating from the second quarter of the 19th century to the late 20th century, with their technological and scientific innovations; to the age of globalisation, the fourth revolution, dating from the late 20th century to the present day, which has brought together all spheres of knowledge and practice and seen the development of smart fabrics. State intervention in the textile manufacturing process was always important, with regulations withdrawing so-called “false fabrics” from the market and in the process condemning or privileging certain artisans, regimenting production in order to guarantee quality, establishing large production units such as the Royal Factories and through awarding commissions, imposing tari s and establishing standards of safety, hygiene and industrial relations and working conditions. There is no other industry more human, more propitious to metaphor or blessed with a richer imaginary than the textile industry, and numerous artists and writers have used the production methods and vocabulary of textiles as a vehicle of vibrant expression. The spinner and the weaver, the tapestry maker and the dyer, the model and the fabric designer have all inspired famous paintings in the Western world, including works by Portuguese artists who followed in the footsteps of Velázquez and reproduced several mythical gures of Classical Antiquity, such as Athena, inventor of the spinning wheel, and Arachne, the young woman whose weaving was so skilful as to arouse the envy of the goddess. Both have come to symbolise aspects of the textile industry: the skill and knowledge required; the beauty and comfort of the human being; the challenge and commitment to the task; the present and the future.