These plates are a celebration of The Palio - a wild and intoxicating horse race that takes place twice a year in that main piazza of Siena, Italy. Dating back to the Middle Ages, the race is an amalgamation of complex events, traditions and customs that have amassed over the centuries and serve as the social bedrock of the city. During the race, the city districts or Contrade - each of which is named after an animal or symbol with a long history and complicated heraldic and semi-mythological associations - compete against one another on horseback.
These plates are made by a family run business founded in Siena. They come from a long line of artisans and craftsmen dating back to 1450 who made armour, coats of arms and flags. The studio is one of the last that produces handmade, traditional Sienese artisanal pieces.