Maestri della concia / the book: Masters of tanning

A book full of life stories, testimonies and images, co-written by Antonio Fabris and Mirco Crestani. It spans more than five decades of the Technical Industrial School Galileo Galilei of Arzignano and reflects the history of the entire Vicenza tannery district. Photos of students, teachers, labs and visits by foreign delegations, immediately give a sense of the great dynamism of this institution, founded in 1960 thanks to a synergy between businessmen and politicians of the time, and which has created generations of technical tanning experts. “There was nothing similar in the world- said Fabris, a teacher  at the ITI Galilei since 1978 – and the teachers themselves, in a pioneering way, invented teaching programmes based on their own technical culture, often experienced in the tanneries”. In 2015, the ITI Galilei celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of the first students’ graduation in 1965 with this volume entitled “Masters of tanning, a school in this territory and the world”. An extract of Il Giornale di Vicenza of 1964, reproduced in the book, states “A unique institution in the Veneto region, well-known abroad. Before graduation, these specialists are commissioned by major Italian and European companies”. This underlines the outstanding contribution to the professionalism of thousands of students and the provision of an economic boost to the area. Is this still the case? “Today a high standard of professionalism is required” says Fabris “and the role of the pure technician, is no longer sufficient to represent the complexity of this profession and the multiplicity of disciplines which students must acquire, from legislation to increasingly, environmental topics”. With this book, the high school and its people, want to remind the whole valley, the entrepreneurs, the politicians, and the entire tanning district, how by its spirit of strategic propulsion it will contribute, now and in the future, to fostering vibrant and responsible economic development of the region.

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