The project, coordinated by the archivists Ilaria Pani and Chiara Quaranta, started in fall 2016 with the census of 18 goldsmith companies from Valenza, selected among those founded at least thirty years ago and still in business. The census form has been worked out after the national regulations, with a specific connection with the census form of business archives developed by Regione Piemonte. Two forms have been filled out, one for the institution and one for the archive; a specific significance has been given to the history of each company, to its features in the context of local and national gold craftsmanship and to its growth in the international background. Each archive is part of an ancient lively tradition, and it highlights the need to preserve the historical memory and enhance the development of the company itself. Because of the peculiarity of these archives, the collection of data has shown the presence of materials for jewels production, which are still used - especially rubber moulds and waxes – of prototypes and plaster works, tools (files, work tables, lathes). It includes also a considerable documentary section, consisting of drawings and sketches on paper, specialized catalogues full of pictures and, to a lesser extent, advertisements. A cooperative work involving all the companies has been the cataloguing of tools collection useful to hand work; they are often located inside the workshops. Each form discloses a gallery of pictures, historical records of a job carried out with passion by the goldsmiths from Valenza, and the archival heritage that must be preserved and promoted.
Danel Baretta and Cristina Zuccaro collaborated in the project.