Arts and Crafts in Slovenia - Contemporary artistic stonemasonry
Date of issue: 27.01.2023
Author: Pavla Bonča
Motive: Contemporary artistic stonemasonry
Printed by: Agencija za komercijalnu djelatnost d.o.o., Zagreb, Croatia
Printing Process and Layout: 4-colour offset in sheets of 16 stamps
Paper: Tullis Russell Chancellor Litho PVA RMS GUM, 102 g/m2
Size: 48.28 x 35.50 mm
Perforation: Grebenasto 14 : 14
Contemporary Artistic Stonemasonry
The manuscript of millennia
Stonemasonry has a rich tradition in Slovenia. This geographically and culturally highly diverse country has numerous deposits of stone, some hard and some softer: witnesses to human development and progress over the course of thousands of years, which the skilled hands of masons have transformed into wonderful artefacts, giving them entirely new meanings and content. Stonemasonry is among the traditional crafts closely associated with Slovenia’s Karst region. Indeed, the stone casket featured on this stamp is the work of a stonemason who hails from this region: Jernej Bortolato (born in Pliskovica in 1974), who sculpted this useful and decorative product in the form of a stylised sea urchin shell on the basis of an idea by designer Andraž Debeljak. The work is notable for the purity of its form and the symmetrical pattern of dots representing the bases of the sea urchin’s spines.
Today Jernej Bortolato is one of Slovenia’s leading master stonemasons. Having begun working with stone as a hobby, he decided to undergo formal training and eventually started his own business. He creates a wide variety of useful and decorative stone products, using typical Karst stone from Lipica, Repen/Rupin, Kopriva and Povir. He has a workshop and shop in Pliskovica, where he makes trays, pestles and mortars, bowls, caskets and a wide range of articles that are suitable as business gifts and protocol gifts – and whose recipients to date have included numerous world leaders and other important dignitaries. While following his own wholly independent creative path, Bortolato also collaborates with designers and realises their ideas in stone. From time to time he creates decorative stone details for buildings, stone fixtures and tombstones.