Portuguese Soul: Dye plants

Our national dyeing was very important in the Trás-os-Montes region where the production of silk was located and attached to it was a dyeing plant, but also in Covilhã, where the Royal Cloth Factory had a dyeing plant attached to it. Despite being a profession, since the Middle Ages,somewhat frowned upon because it’s dirty, it pollutes the waters and it paints the body,while other occupations such as goldsmiths, are well regarded in society, dyers were usually men who accumulated a lot of knowledge, and knew how to achieve iluminous colors like no one else.

There is a connection in our collective imagination between these colors and the art of painting and also to the mystery of how a painter was able to mix colors so effectively.

People commissioned paintings according to its value and distinguished the paintings according to the dyes and pigments that were used. In conclusion, dyeing a fabric, despite being a dirty and mechanical activity, was a very experimental and artistic craft.

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