Vincenzo Aucella: Post Fata Resurgo

Laura Inghirami, journalist and advisor specialized in the jewelry sector, and Founder of “Donna Jewel”, interviewed, for the Cologni Foundation, the Master artisans who have been acknowledged in 2022 as “MAM – Master of Arts and Crafts”, in the category: Jewelry – Silversmithing – Goldsmithing.

Vincenzo Aucella, Marketing Manager and Master artisan of Aucella, and President of Assocoral, awarded MAM – Master of Arts and Crafts, has accompanied us to discover the history of his family company, which is based in Torre del Greco (close to Naples), home to a fascinating centuries-old tradition, and specialized in the processing and production of corals and cameos. “Post Fata Resurgo”: this is the motto of the city, which, like the legendary phoenix, has always risen from the difficulties to build a future made of uniqueness, art and beauty.

The history of Aucella began in 1930. Today Vincenzo and Manuel, under the expert guidance of their father Carmine, represent the fourth generation of the family, which over the years has been able to transform the company from a small goldsmith workshop to an excellent and world-renown atelier. “It was my grandfather Giovanni in particular – says Vincenzo Aucella – who shaped the vision of the company, investing in internationalization. He was a very esteemed man, here in Torre del Greco, for his competence and generosity, which led him to always help others and to invest in art to provide a future to the artists he met on his path”. The active inclination towards social commitment has still remained as an essential feature of the company. “Our founding values are the promotion of creativity and art, respect for our collaborators and team building”.

Furthermore, what drives the company every day is the strong passion for the ancient tradition of Torre del Greco, which today holds the world record for the production of coral jewels and cameos, two forms of art that had different developments and then met right here. “The stories of corals and cameos have one aspect in common – says Vincenzo Aucella – that is the importance of women. When men, since the Renaissance, stayed away for months, facing the sea to catch corals, the women had to carry on their families, facing poverty and uncertainty, since they did not know if their children and husbands would ever return. When in the 19th century the inhabitants of Torre del Greco learned not only to trade the raw material, but also to process it, often the women themselves engaged in this art during the long months in which their companions were by the sea. Similarly, between the 19th and 20th centuries Torre del Greco became an important cultural center and the landmark of cameo manufacturing, and then again women taught local workers this art, training the city’s artisans and master engravers”.

Torre del Greco, nestled in the wide horizon of the sea and the grandeur of Vesuvius volcano, is a continuous source of inspiration for Aucella. “Our territory has taught us to always seek for beauty. We are travelers, and we always carry this philosophy with us: wherever we go, we look for inspiration in beauty. When we create a jewel, we do not follow the trends of the moment, because our hand-crafted product represents a universal and timeless beauty”. And Vincenzo Aucella precisely and inextricably links the concept of excellence to the territory. “Only Torre del Greco specializes in the making of coral jewels and cameos. Uniqueness is the true essence of excellence”.

Pursuing excellence also means knowing how to effectively combine tradition and innovation. This is Aucella’s vision. “I studied IT, and this allowed me to bring technological innovation to the company. Furthermore, since the beginning I have sought to bring stylistic innovation in the atelier, to give a new soul to an art that is often associated with a bygone taste, through research, the continuous comparison with the contemporary world and collaboration with other top companies. Together with my brothers and my parents, Carmine and Maria Francesca, who work in the Torre del Greco office, we are always committed to guaranteeing the distinctive characteristics of elegance and refinement of our jewels and to promoting a culture of openness and innovation”.

And then, the prestigious MAM award. “My application for this award was a personal challenge. I have to thank Alba Cappellieri, who has always believed in our work and gave me the necessary inspiration to reach this important recognition. I consider this award a success for the whole company, for the family and for our collaborators who allow us to express our art at its best, in Italy and in the world”.
And Vincenzo Aucella wishes to dedicate the award precisely to Torre del Greco. “Our territory represents for us a great strength in positive moments, as well as in difficult times”. Post Fata Resurgo.

Laura Inghirami



Head Office and Factory:
Via Vittorio Veneto, 25 – Torre del Greco (Naples)
Phone: +39 0818812545

c/o Goldsmith Center “Il Tarì”
Form 106 – Marcianise (Caserta)
Phone: +39 0823513139

Paolo Pagliai. The art of silversmithing at the time of the “fiaccherai”

Laura Inghirami, journalist and advisor specialized in the jewelry sector, and Founder of “Donna Jewel”, interviewed, for the Cologni Foundation, the Master artisans who have been awarded as “MAM – Master of Arts and Crafts”, in the category: Jewelry – Silversmithing – Goldsmithing.

“The “fiaccherai” – says Master Paolo Pagliai – were the old-time drivers of horse-drawn carriages. In the 40s, my father Orlando Pagliai, founder of the family company, used to give them his hand-written business cards to be distributed, and also to be known and find customers.”

This is the old-time, fascinating story of Paolo Pagliai, Florentine craftsman, awarded MAM – Master of Arts and Crafts, specialized in the production and processing of silverware, as well as in the restoration and the creation of unique pieces on request. Nowadays Pagliai’s silverware is a reference point of excellence, and it has been recognized as a prestigious Florentine Historical Business.
“I’m Orlando Pagliai, the silversmith who worked at Rogai’s: if you need me, you will find me in Costa San Giorgio, 77” – as it was reported on those business cards.

Thanks to his creativity and skills, Pagliai met many important clients; among whom, in the Sixties, was a very relevant person among them – Giovanni Battista Giorgini, acknowledged for his avant-garde taste and for organizing the first fashion show in the Sala Bianca of Palazzo Pitti, Florence, in 1951. The famous entrepreneur thus became a mediator between high Italian craftsmanship, especially Florentine, and the American market.

“Thanks to him – says Stefania Pagliai, third generation of the family – a ten-year collaboration was established with Tiffany, who invested in our company by commissioning several works. For example, they asked us to replicate the works exhibited at the Museum of Silversmithing in Palazzo Pitti, a very prestigious assignment. So my grandfather and my father worked intensively together with a team of specialized craftsmen. The collaboration with Tiffany contributed significantly to the development of the company. ”

Pagliai’s is one of the last shops with its own artisan atelier inside. It is located in Borgo San Jacopo, in the heart of medieval Florence, nestled in the beauty of one of the most inspiring Italian art cities. It is not difficult to understand that the bond with the territory is a key aspect of Pagliai’s identity, as well as a continuous source of inspiration for his creations. The techniques used in the workshop, from hammering and chiseling to complex engravings, celebrate an ancient tradition; and the work of chiselers, founders and goldsmiths gives life to objects of extraordinary beauty, such as the silver dolls that Mrs. Wanda Ferragamo commissioned to Pagliai, as a present to her grandchildren.

“Return to the axis and continue straight on the path of principles and righteousness that was indicated to you. Grandma Tà”: this is the engraving on the back of the dolls, which was intended to be a deep teaching. The dolls, in fact, move when pushed, but then always return standing (2022, G. Visconti: “In the red book of Tà. The life of Wanda Ferragamo”. Mondadori Electa).
Or like Chrysler Building, the unique piece in silver realized on commission, made entirely by hand from a perforated and engraved plate, and then welded to silver, in which the spire of the skyscraper, the details, the gargoyles and the decorations are executed with the lost wax method and chiseled manually.

Over the years, the Pagliai family has shown a strong dedication to the company. And the
women of the family have played a fundamental role: “My wife Raffaella – says Paolo Pagliai – started working as a saleswoman to support me. Her contribution was key for the success of the company: her outgoing and charismatic personality contributed to create a honest relationship of affection with the customers, who would contact and choose us more and more. Today my daughter Stefania carries on the family tradition with commitment and passion”.

Regarding the MAM award, the Master feels proud and surprised. “I am proud to have received the prestigious MAM title. After many years of work, obtaining this recognition was a great satisfaction and an honor for us all. In my life I have always sought excellence, which is the extraordinary beauty of this craft, and nothing else. A timeless beauty I am so passionate about; the same passion that motivated my father, and that we are committed to handing down from generation to generation in our family”.

Laura Inghirami




Silversmith Pagliai
Borgo San Jacopo, 41R – Florence
Phone: +39 055 282840