Italian artisan Fontanini will visit Nelson Fine Art boutique | News, Sports, Jobs
STEUBENVILLE – Emanuele Fontanini, a fourth generation member of the Italian family who has been making nativity scenes since 1908, will make a two-hour appearance at Nelson’s Fine Art on Lincoln Avenue on Friday afternoon.
According to Kevin Jordan, retail store manager, Fontanini will sign nursery items purchased from the store during his visit to Steubenville.
âWe started a relationship with Fontanini a few years ago and added their product to our store. We have a number of religious items and we wanted to bring more Christmas items â, Jordan explained.
âEmanuele Fontanini is touring the United States and has agreed to stop in Steubenville for two hours before returning to the airport and flying to his next destination. He and his family are probably the most famous nursery designers in the country. People who own a Fontanini crÃ¨che will pass it on to their children. And the Fontanini house creates additional figurines each year that can be added to the cribs â, Jordan said.
âWe are very happy that he is coming here. We have been selling their items for about three years now and they produce a high quality product. We have customers who come here from all over the tri-state area to buy a Fontanini figure for their grandchildren, â noted store owner Mark Nelson.
Nelson’s Nativity Scene presents the whole village of Bethlehem.
âSome people have collected hundreds of Fontanini pieces. He signs parts purchased that day, but will also be willing to sign a Fontanini figurine that a customer can bring into the store â, Nelson pointed out.
Jordan said the Fontanini house started out as a one-room store in a village in northern Italy.
âEmanuele Fontanini apprenticed with an artist at the age of 13. The first figures of Fontanini were in plaster, then in papier-mÃ¢chÃ© with movable arms and cloth costumes. His three sons followed in his footsteps, as did their sons.
âToday, the fourth generation, including Emanuele, Stefano, Marco and Luca, continues the family heritage. “ Jordan said.