Saverio Pastor

  • EMAIL: savepastor@libero.it

  • TELEFONO E FAX: 041 522 5699

  • WEBSITE: www.forcole.com

  • LOCATION: Fondamenta Soranzo, 341 30123 Dorsoduro, Venezia ITALY

If you are visiting Venice, you can see forcole being made at Saverio Pastor's workshop, Le Forcole, on the Fondamenta Soranzo - a quiet canalside near the Guggenheim Collection (boat stop: La Salute). The workshop is open from 8am to 6pm (closed on Sundays and most Saturdays). The craftsmen who made forcole were, and still are, the same who make oars: remèri. Their corporation was founded in 1307 and, as their name indicates, the construction of the thousands of oars required by the Serene Republic was considered more important than making fórcole. The latter were obtained from pieces of wood left over from boatbuilding and were very simple: in the XVI century the fórcola was a a flat board with one or two semicircular cuts (morsi) to support the oar.   The craft of the remèr (Venetian oar maker) has always been essential for the daily life of a city born in the middle of a lagoon. The remèri founded their own corporation which was officially recognized in 1307. The work of the remèr would begin with the choice of timber from the Alpine woods of Cansiglio where a number of mountain-based oar-makers supervised the choice of beech trees, their cutting and removal from the woods. The enormous trunks of beech, cut lengthways into quarters, were loaded onto rafts for transport by river to Venice. Today there are three remèri in Venice. Part of our work is to keep alive the traditions that were handed down from our maestri, while updating them to satisfy modern rowing requirements.

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