Station: [19] Italian Pigozzi Crib

M: The mountain landscape and the buildings were modelled by one of Italy's most famous crib builders – Antonio Pigozzi from the village of Gazzano. The crib was made between 2005 and 2010, and the figurines were modelled by the Mattei brothers from Apulia.

F: This crib was inspired by the mountain landscape of the Apennines, with its cypresses and olive trees. In a derelict stable, built into a cave in the rock face, we see the Holy Family with a shepherd kneeling in front of them. One unusual feature of this scene is that there are women among those approaching the manger to welcome the child. That kind of image is rarely found in historical cribs. Even the Bible only mentions shepherds hurrying to the scene of the birth. But in the 21st century, when equal rights for women should no longer be an issue, crib builders are increasingly including female figures in their scenes. That’s because Jesus is there for everyone – regardless of gender, culture, age and social status.

M: This is another crib where the sense of depth is impressive. There’s a view across the landscape into the distance, and you can imagine walking along the road into the village. There are houses to the right and left. The lines of the roofs and windows run towards a single vanishing point on the horizon, thus creating perspective.

F: Place yourself within the landscape: is that the wind rustling through the cypresses? And that wonderful smell – could it be from a bakery in the village? *Listen – I’m sure I heard the rippling of water from the river. Cribs with one-point perspective draw the viewer right into the scene.

M: There’s a stone bridge across the river. Bridges always imply a connection. In this case, the bridge creates a connection to the birth of Christ.

F: We’re almost at the end of our tour – our final stop is on the ground floor.

Fotos: © Krippenmuseum und © Trüpschuch