This project initiated documentation and valorization of the material and oral historical records of the most important traditional fishing practice of southeast Sicily, the mattanza.
The project initiated documentation and valorization of the material and oral historical records of the most important traditional fishing practice of southeast Sicily, the mattanza. This communal tuna harvest has been a key feature of local culture, with roots tracing back centuries if not millennia. Yet its distinctive boats lie derelict, its processing facilities remain largely untapped heritage treasures, and the human stories that illustrate this practice are similarly fading. In an effort to preserve this tangible link to the past, we undertook digital recording of the vessels, spaces, and memories associated with the local mattanza. The resulting 3D models and associated oral historical data form the basis for not only detailed study of local shipbuilding traditions and the social lives of fishing communities, but also new opportunities to bring distinctive heritage into the public sphere. Most importantly, these first efforts generated community interest and a new network of public institutions and private individuals partnering to stimulate continued work on this heritage as a mechanism for local development