Bornholm becomes the first World Craft Region

Bornholm has, as the first area in Europe, been honoured with the coveted title "World Craft Region" because of its particularly strong position in the field of handicraft products.
Monday, October 9, 2017

Behind the title is the World Craft Council (WCC), which is the largest international organization to promote handicrafts. WCC works non-profitable, non-governmental and is acknowledged by UNESCO.

The title “World Craft Region” has so far been assigned to 21 cities and urban areas in Asia and South America.
Good collaboration and thorough preliminary work between relevant players and passionate people have led to the fact that the Regional Municipality of Bornholm also applied for the unique status for handicraft products, which no other cities or regions in Europe have so far achieved.

The history is briefly that Timmi B. Kromann gathered a strong team in cooperation with the Regional Municipality of Bornholm and Arts & Crafts Association Bornholm (ACAB), and received support from the tourism and business sectors to write a thorough application to be chosen and consider for a World Craft Region. In addition to being chairman of ACAB, Timmi Kromand is also Denmark's regional representative in the European division of WCC, and has thus been able to draw on her network and knowledge of the organization to qualify the preliminary work.

International jury
Based on the application, an international jury visited Bornholm on 21-24 August to assess whether the island could become Europe's first area, which received the coveted title of Word Craft Region because of its particularly strong position in the field of handicraft products.

The jury who visited Bornholm consisted of:

  • Louise Allen, President WCC-Europe
  • Hege Henriksen, Director Norwegian Crafts, Board member WCC-Europe
  • Clive Fiddis, Owner Annadale Brick orks Co Ltd
  • Susanne Jøker Johnson, The Royal Academy of Fine Arts and Glass and Ceramic School Bornholm

The jury met a number of representatives from the municipality, business community and of course the artists - including mayor Winni Grosbøll, Deputy Mayor Søren Schow, Director Pernille Bülow, Hjorths Ceramics Factory, Grønbechs Gård, Artmusset, The Academy of Fine Arts Design School at Bornholm, Center for Regional and Tourism Research and many more.

The jury's report is subsequently assessed by the World Crafts Council's central board, headed by chairman Rosy Greenlees. There has thus been a very thorough assessment for awarding the title.

The artists "Michelin star"
Bornholm already enjoys special national and international attention as a result of a strong brand based on unique, high-quality experiences. Besides the handicraft products, the brand of Bornholm often involves outdoor experiences along the rocky coast, locally produced quality food, gourmet restaurants, one of which has also been rewarded with a Michelin star this year, and especially “Folkemødet” in June. With the honours of the World Crafts Council, Bornholm has now received its own artists "Michelin star".

Denmark's Minister for Culture, Mette Bock, says in a comment on the prestigious artisan award for Bornholm as the first place in Europe:
"It is unusually good that Bornholm today - as the first place in Europe and as the first island community in the world - is honoured internationally for outstanding crafts. In the area of glass, ceramics and textiles, Bornholm has great traditions and is in a rapid development. The recognition also focuses on the Academy of Fine Arts’ Design School in Bornholm, which is capable of hatching craftsmen and creative talents of a high calibre. There is a reason to dip the flag for Bornholm!"

Timmi B. Kromann, who is also textile designer and holder of KOKOLORES in Svaneke, is really proud and happy:
"As chairman of ACAB, I am really proud and happy today. With the title as World Craft Region, Bornholm is now gaining international recognition for the strong arts and crafts traditions and environments we can present across the entire island.
"In ACAB, we have been working hard to develop quality in handicrafts from Bornholm, so the title gives us a very special status. We are of course proud because we on Bornholm are the first in Europe to receive this recognition from the World Craft Council."

Also in the umbrella organization for marketing and development of the Bornholm tourism industry, Destination Bornholm, there is great enthusiasm:
"Wow!" Exclaims the director of Destination Bornholm, Pernille Kofoed Lydolph, as she finds out that the handicraft adulation has just been awarded to Bornholm. I'm really looking forward to it! It is recognition of one of the island's strengths, and it is extremely well deserved. It further strengthens our story about Bornholm and creates new perspectives. I look forward to discussing with ACAB, the Regional Municipality of Bornholm and other good players how to make the most of the allocation of the new title."

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For Further Information

Timmi B. Kromann
Chairman of Arts & Crafts Association Bornholm (ACAB) / Textile designer and owner of KOKOLORES
info@kokolores.dk / +45 51 51 45 99

Louise Allen
President WCC-Europe
louise@dccoi.ie / +353 86 242 5569

Niklas Dalsjø
Special consultant, The Regional Municipality of Bornholm
Niklas.Dalsjoe@brk.dk /  +45 56 92 13 19

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