Certaldo - Nail Museum
Via Boccaccio 35, Certaldo. At the Artisan Center.
Opening by reservation only: +39 0571 661219
The museum is located inside Giannozzi Palace, between SS. Annunziata square and Porta al Sole. Once a manor house, today it is the seat of artisan's shops, where you can attend live hand-crafting sessions. The Nail Museum is a unique collection brought together by the artist-carpenter Giancarlo Masini; it exhibits nails of any shape and time, tools of farming civilization, and wood sculptures. It was Masini himself who created in his shop in Certaldo Alta the character “Beppe Chiodo” (Joseph the Nail).
Thanks to the museum and the artisans of the time, here you can breathe the know-how that you can find at every corner and in any field of the Val d’Elsa. But it is also possible to experience an unusual tale of human history through daily use objects, anecdotes, stories and pictures concerning the many trades in which nails play a not so visible yet still fundamental role.
In 1994, the Golden Nail, was entitled by the founder himself. This prize is awarded to a symbolic artist of Mercantia, the important international street theater festival which was created in 1988. Every year, dance companies, storytellers, enchanters, mimes, street bands, cabaret artists, puppeteers and jugglers perform through the streets of Certaldo, making it a magical place where you wish you could stay forever.
But the party, inevitably, has to end. The Nail Museum keeps its spirit. Visiting it, we will live an ancient story, made not of imposing buildings and golden palaces, but of people's streets and daily objects; and we will get to touch them as the men of that time did then.
It is here that, after being distracted by the research of popular faces to portray, Leonardo da Vinci will return to lead us.